By Ephraim Kasozi
Visually impaired students have petitioned court challenging government decision to suspend 10 subjects under the O-Level curriculum. The petition was filed in the High Court on Wednesday.
The students under the Special Education Needs Unit are represented by counsel Benson Nkwasibwe. They sued the Uganda Curriculum Development Centre (NCDC), Uganda National Examinations Board (Uneb) and the Attorney General (AG) for alleged violation of their right to education.
The blind students are currently in their fourth year of the O-Level education. They contend that they had 10 subjects, including political education, health education, office practice, general science and Christian Religious Education and suspension of these subjects has violated their right to affirmative action for marginalised groups.
"The visually impaired learners were left with a small window of opportunity to acquire skills in science subjects as health education and general science were scrapped," the petition reads in part.
The students say that in 2008, the Education ministry and NCDC reduced the number of subjects offered at O-Level and sent a circular to all heads of UCE examination centres announcing suspension of the subjects.
The subjects are Fasihi ya Kiswahili, Political Education, Additional Mathematics, General Science, Health Education, Electricity and Electronics, Power and Energy, Short Hand, Type Writing and Office Practice.
It is alleged that following the decision, in 2015 UNEB passed a circular to all UCE centres informing them that the suspended subjects would not be examined for the last time in 2016. The blind students say this is a violation of their constitutional right to education.
This article was published on All Africa's website on March 24, 2017.
The Convention on the Rights of the Child sets out the rights that must be realized for children to develop their full potential, free from hunger and want, neglect and abuse. It reflects a new vision of the child. Children are neither the property of their parents nor are they helpless objects of charity. They are human beings and are the subject of their own rights. The Convention offers a vision of the child as an individual and as a member of a family and community, with rights and responsibilities appropriate to his or her age and stage of development. By recognizing children's rights in this way, the Convention firmly sets the focus on the whole child.