Ramna Buddhi Protibondhi and Autistic School has been working for mentally challenged children since 1985. 170 students presently attend the school, which has 12 teachers including the principal.
The school offers an inclusive curriculum made especially for mentally challenged children. They have divided the classes in groups. The primary group is for children under 12, who attend the classes along with their mothers. The second and third groups are divided by their ability to learn new things. They have seven different kinds of classes according to the children’s needs. The school’s main focus is to make them capable enough to lead their lives without the help of others. Children of this school prepared for Pohela Boishakh for a week. They made masks, floats, greeting cards and many other items for the event. They also had a cultural function at their school on April 14, starting the day with “Mongol shobhajatra”, marching along with their teachers. They presented songs and dance recitals at the function. The event included a fair as well, where the crafts made by them were up for sale.
Rehana Akhter Bulbul, the Principal, strongly believes, rehabilitation for these children after a certain age is necessary, with governmental support. The teachers don’t receive adequate and proper training, which is a big barrier for the growth of these children. Rehana Akhter says, “Physically challenged children are now more accepted in the society, but they are still lagging behind. Integrated classes in primary schools are vital to change the negative attitude our society has towards them.”