An American based Nigerian Professor of Deaf Education, Khadijat Rashid, has appealed to the Nigerian government to increase funding for education for the deaf in the country.
Speaking through an interpreter, Professor Rashid explained that such increase in funding would provide people living with disability access to education.
The don said that funding of education for the deaf would be profitable to Nigerian economy.
Professor Rashid said that neglect or underfunding of education for the deaf or people living with disability could be detrimental to the nation.
“Education for the deaf is not cheap, however, to neglect this set of people is more expensive.”
“To educate this people will be more profitable to the nation as they will become employed and become tax payer citizens of Nigeria rather than becoming a burden on the society,” she explained.
The 51-year -old lecturer called on Nigerian government to emulate the U.S government in funding education for the deaf.
“Financial support from the government is necessary ‘to enhance access to education by the deaf and other people living with disabilities.”
Professor Rashid, who is a Specialist in Education for the Deaf, is currently working as a Professor and Dean of the School of Education, Business and Human Services, Gallaudet University, U.S.
Gallaudet University is a Federally Chartered Private University for the education of the deaf and hard of hearing in Washington DC, U.S.
According to Professor Rashid, “Gallaudet is a private university but we have support from the U.S. and provide quality education for the deaf and people with hard hearing.”
“I believe that Nigeria government should do the same,” reiterated Professor Rashid.
The don also called on parents who have children that are deaf or hard of hearing to support them by giving them quality education.
“These people can become great only that they should be given equal opportunity.”
“The parents should be advised to educate their children with hearing defect, no child is worthless, give them equal opportunity no matter their status.
“Educate your children, you never know what they will become tomorrow,” she said.
Rashid said Gallaudet University was into partnership with some university in Nigeria and had signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Wesley University, in Ondo State, South west Nigeria.
She said the MOU was aimed at helping the school develop its capacity in educating deaf students in Nigeria.