Serah Wanja, Margaret Murugami, Beatrice Bunyasi


Effective education ensures that students are able to fully participate and benefit from it, regardless of whether they have impairments or not. Good vision is important for students at all stages of learning as it helps them reach their academic potential. It is paramount that students with visual impairment are proficient in Braille so that they are not disadvantaged academically since Braille remains their main medium of communication. Previous studies have ventured into academic performance of learners with visual impairment, however, nothing much is known about their Braille proficiency level. Braille reading tests were administered to forty-seven class eight and form four students in special schools for learners with visual impairments to establish their Braille literacy level. Semi structured interviews were used to solicit more information from four head teachers and a questionnaire used for sixteen teachers in the schools under study. Data was analyzed qualitatively along the common themes identified. The results established that Braille literacy level among primary school children was rather low. However, the case was quite different among high school students. There was no uniformity in the way schools arranged to teach their students Braille. Braille literacy could be improved if strategies were set to teach children with visual impairment Braille and ensure that they were proficient in it.

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Braille literacy, visual impairment, special schools, literacy level, NACOSTI, Kenya Institute of Special Education

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