Monday, October 21, 2013

Education in Sign Language for Deaf Children

In many parts of the world, human rights is often denied for the voiceless. An example of such violation is the lack of education available for deaf children and young adults around the world. The barriers that keeps these potential students from education mostly stems from ignorance rather than the lack of available technology. Many teachers are not well-trained in sign language, and a number of parents do not think to let their children go to school to better their lives. According to the Human Rights Watch’s documented cases of deaf children and young adults in Nepal, China, and northern Uganda, many teachers and parents often have the misconception that deaf children are not intellectually capable enough to learn.

Teaching just sign language—let alone other subjects such as biology, math, and history—would be enough to improve the lives of deaf people tremendously as they would now have the power to communicate with other people and express themselves. This is crucial because without a method of communication, we would all be deprived the chance to bond with others and thus be stuck in isolation.

This is the classic case of not using the technology available for us to advance human rights protection. We can use online education to train teachers to learn their national sign language or even connect the deaf students to an educator fluent in sign language across the world to allow those students to learn. Overall, not using all the available resources including technology to protect basic human rights would be a violation of human rights in itself.

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