State Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Children Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah said this was because not all parents of students from the PwD group wanted to send their children to schools in other states, like in Peninsular Malaysia, for fear of being apart from them.
“Previously, we applied to the Education Ministry for the setting up of a Pwd vocational school in Sarawak, which could also accommodate PwD students from Sabah. Before Pakatan Harapan (PH) took over (the federal government), in principle, the matter had been agreed upon on,” she told reporters after attending a function at the Sarawak branch of the Society of the Blind in Malaysia here today.
Fatimah said that when the government changed hands, her ministry never heard anything about the application and that’s why the state government has decided to create its own school in the state.
“It (the PwD vocational school will be) owned by the state government. So, the school will be a bit different, (and for now) we are still discussing in terms of its form (course and syllabus to be offered),” she said.
Fatimah said that for now, the types of courses and skills training for students with disabilities in the school were also being discussed by taking into account various factors, including aspects of the students’ disabilities such as visual impairment, hearing impairment, learning disabilities or physical disabilities.
She said the school’s location had yet to be determined and that she was ready to accept any views from the PwD group regarding the appropriate site for the building of the school.
“Our target is so that we can produce a concept paper (on the form of the vocational school) this year,” she said.
Fatimah said that once the concept paper was ready, her ministry would start to set up the school, perhaps in a pioneering and small-scale first by renting the premises before constructing the school building.