Shri B. ELANGOVAN, Principal,
JSS Polytechnic for the Differently Abled.
In India, a person born with any kind of disability was believed to be a sin in the society. For decades, opportunities in education, employment and other living status was denied for the differently abled even though efforts are being made to rehabilitate them by the Government and other socially responsible organizations both in terms of education and employment.
- Transforming minds of the differently abled students with positive attitude and bring them into the main stream of society.
- Providing high quality technical education on par with the other diploma level institutions.
- Creating accessible environment for improvement of teaching-learning process.
- Encouraging students to participate in beyond-the-curriculum activities for facing the society with confidence.
- Bridging-the-Gap between the education and employment needs among the differently abled students.
- Become the Center of Excellence in technical education exclusively for the differently abled.
- Expansion of facilities to accommodate more number of differently abled students through addition of new need based programmes.
Further to meet the needs of the National Education Policy and the National Policy for Persons with Disabilities, the Govt. of Karnataka along with JSS Mahavidyapeetha, Mysore who were also thinking on the similar lines ventured to establish a special technical institution exclusively for the differently abled at diploma level under the World Bank assisted scheme. JSS Polytechnic for the Differently Abled (JSSPDA) was established in the year 1991-92, and this institute is first of its kind in India offering diploma programmes for the differently abled students. Initially, 3 courses namely Architecture, Computer Science & Engineering and Commercial Practice were started for Orthopedically Handicapped, Hearing Impaired and Visually Impaired (partial). Later 3 more new courses were added namely Jewellery Design & Technology (JD&T), Electronics & Communication Engineering and Computer Applications for the Visually Impaired (CAVI). JD&T and CAVI courses were started for the first time in India. All the six courses are approved by the Board of Technical Education, Government of Karnataka and All India Council for Technical Education, Government of India. The admission to this polytechnic is on all India basis and the minimum entry level qualification is a pass in SSLC or its equivalent with approved level of disability. Significant efforts are made to improve the admission to this polytechnic and the entire infrastructure such as buildings, equipment, library books, hostel facilities and other amenities were created under the World Bank Assistance initially for the 3 courses accommodating 270 students. More than 80% of them are from rural and economically backward groups. The students are given education at an affordable cost with necessary scholarships and grant support from State and Central Govt., JSS Mahavidyapeetha, Social / Industrial organizations and individual philanthropists. In addition, the staff are provided with benefits like provident fund, Group Insurance, Health Insurance and free medical facilities including counseling by psychologist in the institution. The students are also supported with facilities / devices which would help them to overcome their difficulties related to disabilities.
The institute till today has produced nearly 1,200 graduates; most of them are employed in industrial establishments, research institutes, Govt. organizations and service establishments. A few of them are also self-employed. Some of the passed out students have also gone in for higher education in their respective disciplines. The institute has academic autonomy in terms of curriculum design to suit the requirement of the employers, conduct exams and declare results. The autonomy has helped the institution to carry on the course to suit the requirement and the pace of disabled students without sacrificing the academic input that the employing organizations look from a prospective employee. The diploma certificate will be issued by Board of Technical Examination, Govt. of Karnataka.
The institute as on today has 450 students pursuing their diploma in 6 different disciplines. The facility that was originally created for 270 students is not sufficient to accommodate the present strength. There is a need to augment the existing infrastructure in terms of class rooms, laboratories, library, student amenities and hostels.
As per the National Policy of the Govt., there is a provision to earmark 3% of the budget for the welfare of differently abled persons. Further there is also reservation in job placements. Our experience shows that, industries / service establishments are keen to help the differently abled who are competent for suitable jobs. Hence, there is a great need to strengthen this institution which is already well known in the society.
Recognizing the contribution that this institute has made over two decades, the Govt. of India has awarded “Best Institution working for the cause of Persons with Disabilities” (Additional award) in the year 2012 by the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Govt. of India. The award was presented by His Excellency The President of India.
During the year 2016 The Government of Karnataka has honoured us with a State Award under the category of “Best Institution working for the cause of Persons with Disabilities”.