I was looking for some documents in my computer folder when i stumbled upon this Global Xchange application form. What attracts me the most in the form is this question:
THINKING ABOUT YOUR OWN COMMUNITY, WHAT IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE AROUND UNEMPLOYEMENT AND ACCESS TO EDUCATION THAT MATTERS TO YOUNG PEOPLE LIKE YOURSELF?
And here’s what i wrote at that time (with some changes in grammar and add some words to make more sense in it):
To me, the most important issue about education access in Yogyakarta is the education access for the diffable. When I was in High School, my friends made a documentary movie project. The movie was about the mobility access for diffabels. They asked me to participate in the movie and i said yes. All I had to do was just to sit on the wheel chair and go around the school by myself on that wheelchair. That was a hard thing to do because my school didn’t have a flat pavement, there were a lot of sands, rocks, and wild grass, and there would be a bump or any other barriers to reach other place. Five minutes later i felt so exhausted. At that time I couldn’t imagine how the diffables could overcome the lack of mobility access for them without asking others to help them.
Few days before I read an article about a blind girl who decided to continue her study in a public high school. Why doesn’t she go to a special school which have a proper method of study for her? This is happened because she knew that her certificate from the special school couldn’t bring her to university, while she wants to continue her study to reach her dreams. So, she took this challenge to just go to a public high school. She found so many difficulties when she’s studying there. She’s not comfortable with her friends behaviour in class and the teachers couldn’t even understand her conditions. All of this happened because the teachers never study about diffability so they don’t know how to deal with diffables. The purpose of inclusive education does not work out really well.
I find that the access for a proper education for the students with special needs is just not enough. There are some good inclusive schools in Yogyakarta such as SD Tumbuh or Sanggar Anak Alam, but that’s just a small number if we compared to all the schools that available in this city. There are a lot of problems too, like the school fees (since not all of them come from a wealthy family), the distance from the student house, the curriculum (is it suitable or not), the building (is it support their mobility or not, so they won’t be a trouble for others), etc.
From the problem above, what I can suggest for this issue is to increase the diffable participation in the policy making, because they are the ones who know their real conditions and what exactly they need to support themselves; increasing the understanding about diffability to the public, about what is difability and how to overcome with them but the most important of all is increasing the mutual respect of each other in every condition from now on to increase the self confidence of the diffables that they can move on with their own ability. After all, they are not dissable. They have different ability and they also have the same right to get the facility they need and they deserve that.
PS: pardon my english.. It’s originally in english and i’m way too lazy to translate it to Bahasa Indonesia.