Saudi Sign Language(S) and Inclusion
Students with hearing impairments in schools rely on some methods as communication tools such as: sign Language; auditory verbal; Oral (lip-reading) and total communication. In fact, since eightieths, there is a constantly controversy between stakeholders about which method is the best or appropriate for educating students with hearing impairments. More importantly, what is the best method that helps those students to achieve successful inclusion? Or does this dispute affect the right of those students in inclusion? It is important to take these questions in our consideration when we are discussing communication tools for students with hearing impairments.
Regardless these arguments, many countries around the world offer these methods as options to educate their students with hearing impairments. However, in Saudi Arabia, there is a single communication method for students with hearing impairments that is sing language. This is the smallest part of the problem. The biggest part is that there are a multiple sign language systems, which results in students experiencing a double form of exclusion; firstly from mainstream classrooms and secondly from active engagement in Saudi society. This problem has been realized via some interesting gathered data that been reached by the researcher during fieldwork in his PhD titled “ Exclusion and Inclusion of Deaf Students from Mainstream Classrooms at Primary Schools in Saudi Arabia”. This paper aims to raise this issue and discuss its causes, impacts on education and inclusion of students with hearing impairments and to suggest some solutions that can enhance inclusion for students with hearing impairments in Saudi Arabia.
Deaf – Hearing impairments - Sing language –Inclusive education – Inclusion