C.R. Ranganathan School for Deaf
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This residential school for deaf children was started by Mr. C.R. Ranganathan in 1993 with just five students. Today the school houses 108 children from Pune and surrounding villages ranging in age from 5 to 18 years. For most of the children, their hearing impairment is a congenital condition – they were born with severe or total deafness. Speaking is a challenge that many of the students are working on.
Nearly all of the teachers are able to hear normally. They teach in a holistic manner using sign language, speaking, and writing. Classrooms for the older students are equipped with hearing-aides, which are connected to a central system. There is a dedicated hearing and speech therapist at the school who tests all the children and equips them with the necessary equipment to improve their hearing and speech.
There is government funding for 75 students, but other students are funded by various independent donors, such as the local Lions Club. There are two separate dorms for girls and boys, and each has a caretaker who lives with them.
Life skills courses are taught and include handicrafts, sports, computer lessons and typing, tailoring, cultural programmes, welding, carpentry, and cosmology.