Disability in institutions of higher learning has been a challenge to institution’s administration, faculty members and students (Gabel & Miskovic, 2014). The challenge can be attributed to the fact that there is limited information regarding the the rights of people with disabilities, as well as how to treat them. The following journal looks at the roles played by schools and higher education institutions in ensuring that students with disabilities are taken care of as per legal requirements.
There have been debates on whether higher education institutions have a responsibility to address the needs of underrepresented groups. Research has showed that unrepresented groups have a lot of difficulties succeeding in colleges. According to Gabel and Miskovic (2014), the burden of ensuring that such groups get the necessary education, skills, and knowledge is left to the higher education institutions. For instance, the law mandates the higher education institutions to ensure that the underrepresented groups are provided with the necessary services and resources. The provision of enabling environment to the underrepresented groups helps them in enhancing their learning, which contributes positively in their success.
Given the high cost of providing disability services, which is approximated to cost $ 20, 000 per student, and the law of self-disclose, it is evident that learning institutions have a huge task to ensure that they provide the best for students with disabilities. For example, students with disability require special resources to assist in their learning. Some of these resources include writing and reading machines, special education teachers, and interpreters. Most of these resources are expensive to buy and implement. In addition, the machines are expensive, and hard to find and have high maintenance cost. Furthermore, the special education teachers and interpreters are few.
Despite the challenges, the schools have a responsibility to fulfill in ensuring that all students’ groups are provided with the services that they require. As result, the higher education institutions ought to consider the rights of all special groups when putting in place strategies to enhance diversity. According to (2000), the underrepresented students tend to be discriminated in terms of physical ability, religious and racial affiliation. Thus, it is the duty of the learning institutions to offer moral support through guidance and counseling programs to the various students groups. In addition, Konur (2000) suggested that the higher education institutions should enact rules and regulations to safeguard the rights of the underrepresented groups.
Thus, it is evident that disability is a problem that is common among thousands of people. Across the globe, people with disabilities are estimated to account for 10% of the total population. Majority of the people with disabilities are found in third world countries. The people with disabilities face different forms of discriminations. An example of the discriminations includes absence of learning environment that has the right equipment for their education. As a result, the learning institutions should put in place programs that promote the wellbeing of the students with disabilities and the underrepresented students. For example, implementation of multiculturalism and diversity programs in higher education institutions as a way of promoting exchange of ideas and cultural beliefs. The programs promote inclusivity and ensure awareness among students thus fostering understanding. This forms the basis of ensuring that the rights of students with disabilities and the underrepresented groups are not violated.
Gabel, S., & Miskovic, M. (2014). Discourse and the containment of disability: an institutional analysis. Disability & Society, 29(7), 1145-1158.
Konur, O. (2000). Creating Enforceable Civil Rights for Disabled Students in Higher Education: An institutional theory perspective. Disability & Society, 15(7), 1041- 1063.