Disability could be visible or invisible, temporary or permanent. The first major and systematic record of disabled persons in Pakistan is available from 1961 census. According to this record nearly 2 percent of the population suffered from all kinds of disabilities, particularly the children of age group 0-14 years after the initial crisis, many parents develop healthy and constructive attitude towards their handicapped children maximum population of Pakistan lives in rural areas so majority of the children are born and brought up there. The overall condition of our villages gives their life as start with multiple disadvantages. They suffer from illness caused by malnutrition and non-hygienic condition. The situation of handicapped children is far from satisfactory. The causes of this tragedy are poverty, ignorance, malnutrition, poor housing facilities, inadequate healthcare and environment act as a catalyst for infection. Good physical and mental growth can not be achieved in an environment where there is poverty and misery, food and shelter is inadequate and health services are either lacking or extremely inadequate. The adverse social, economic and environmental conditions can be considered responsible for the poor intellectual performance of many children, who in more favorable environment could develop abilities within a spectrum. (David, 1978)
Education of the disable children was considered as useless exercise. The assumption was in past that a disable person could never become an integral member of the society. Persons with professional expertise to teach disabled children were not available and there was no infrastructure to support the education, training and rehabilitation of special children. The time has changed and the education of disable has started with a focus. A gradual realization has emerged that the education of a disable child is as important as the education of an able bodied main stream child. The special school system evolved in Pakistan as early as first decade of twentieth century, however the schools are not in sufficient numbers to cater all the special children. The role of non-government organizations (NGOs) is very significant in the development of special education in Pakistan. The facilities to support higher education for special people in colleges and universities are not available. The mainstream schools do not have teachers and equipment to accommodate special children (Ali, 2003).
One-quarter of the teachers believed that they had sufficient classroom time for inclusion efforts, that they were currently prepared to teach students with disabilities, or that they would receive sufficient training for inclusion efforts. These findings were interpreted as support for the assumption that teachers viewed students with disabilities in the context of the reality of the general education classroom rather than as support for the prevailing attitudes about integration. General education teachers thus demonstrated certain reluctance about inclusion that must be addressed if such a policy change was to be successful (Welch, 1989).
The emphasis on special education as a place deflected attention away from the fact that special education was a more comprehensive process whose actual dynamics were major contributors to its success or failure A significant part of the special education process was represented in the beliefs and actions of general education. An integrated system means that special education cannot act independently as a separate system, but must formulate policy in response to the attitudes, perceptions, and behaviors of general education (Gallagher, 1994).
Consideration for the needs of students of special school is the most central aspect of special education. It not only help teachers to plan, devise and implement modified curriculum but also guide them to create congenial classroom environment, set individual educational plans, arrange suitable educational resources, adopt effective teaching strategies, and select appropriate evaluation methods to improve the learning out comes of special children. Parents themselves take their disable child to special school where the school staff access their needs without following any standardized method for assessing the level of child's disability. Consequently, a very little detail about the special educational needs of the assessed child is available which is not sufficient for teachers to devise effective educational plans and arrange appropriate resources for such children (Coenen et al 2006).
The issues concerning education of handicapped children and sociological view are globally highlighted by social scientist. The complexity in the nature of problems has further demanded prudent efforts especially in traditional societies of developing countries. Dera Ghazi Khan remained remote and deprived district of Punjab in terms of resource allocation yet the existence and sustainability of special education centers will determine the socio economic status of handicapped children. The evaluation of centers will help in determining the needs and problems of these helpless population strata. In this regard the present study will be contributing a substantial part in improving the efficiency of services provided to handicapped children.
Mext (2002) explored that education system for children with special needs was shifting to special support education at the beginning of the 21st century. Ministry of education, culture, sports, science and technology mentioned that the special support education is a primary catalyst for the progress toward an equal opportunity society for all children including individuals with disabilities. The main principle of special support education is meeting individual needs of each child. A lifelong support system shall be developed through co-operation among every sector in society to promote children's autonomy and participation in all societies.
Ali (2003) studied the development of special education network in historical perspective and the nature and put some measures for its improvement. In her study she designed various instruments and conducted interviews of the special educators, support professionals, parents of special children and special persons. She found that the parent involvement in the education of special children is at minimal. A part from this she also concluded that vast majority of parents of special children of all categories and special persons are not fully satisfied with the education being given to their children. She also concluded that the role of non-government organizations (NGOs) was very significant in the development of special education in Pakistan; however the facilities to support higher education for special people in colleges and universities were not available.
Alam et al (2005) studied the behavior of parents towards physically handicapped children in Islamabad city by interviewing method. They found that a major proportion of the respondents had intermediate to graduation levels of education. About 30% of the respondent's children suffered from deaf and dump and blind. Majority of the respondents said that their children were physical handicapped since birth.
Kitcher et al (2005) studied that behavioral disorders were not only very distressing to multiply handicapped patients and their families but also had a negative impact on their learning at school or other facility, peer relationships and social competence, so more attention should be paid to diagnose (detect and classify) and aggressively treat behavioral disorders by pharmacological, educational and environmental interventions.
Kazimi (2007) reported that in Pakistan, three systems of Education at present operate 1. Normal schools 2.Special Education Schools and 3. Inclusive Schools. In the last named special students of only the lower classes were accommodated. She argued that problems associated with working environment in Pakistan were wide ranging and have very severe effect on the personality of the person, especially when working with children in special setting or in inclusive settings with mental retardation or physical impairment. Further more, Teachers very often feel stress due to professional demands and ambiguous job description, parental pressure, non-supportive behavior and lack of student motivation. Similarly, Teachers working in mainstream inclusive education setting feel less stress.
Molnara et al (2008) reported the education of the forthcoming generation was always a difficult task and this was particularly true for those educational institutes where students requiring special treatment were educated. These students were often educationally challenged, mentally challenged or multi-challenged. They present an international co-operation lasting for three years whose prime goal was to construct non-language-dependent software for handicapped children. They introduce the institutions taking part in the development, the process of the program's creation, the steps to apply the program and the possibilities and methods of improvement.
Rao (2008) studied the persons with disabilities enjoyed co-existence, though at different times, the treatment and attitudes were at variant. Out of all the types of disabilities, an intellectual disability poses greater challenges than the other types. The families of persons with intellectual disabilities did also have needs different from others, which cannot be segregated from the needs of children with intellectual disability. The National Institute for the Mentally Handicapped had developed many service models and contributed toward human resource development and research. National Policy has also considered as crucial the development of human resources for providing education to all children with disabilities in the general education stream. Many milestones have been left behind in the path, significant achievements have been made and opportunities have been created for the disabled.
Fletcher (2009) studied the students with a classmate with serious emotional problem experience reductions in first-grade test scores, especially students in low-income schools and within schools using school-level fixed effects specifications were qualitatively similar. The magnitude of the reduction in mathematics achievement was approximately 30-60 percent of the size of the adjusted black-white achievement gap. Since nearly 10 percent of the student population has a classmate with a serious emotional problem, the aggregate effect on test scores of the policy of including these students is potentially quite large.
Nabeel (2009) stated that Department of special education Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) through distance learning system offers study/training at graduate, masters and Ph. D. levels. Teachers are prepared in 6 specialized areas of visual Impairment, physical disabilities, hearing impairment, intellectual disability, learning disability and inclusive education. Each student is assigned to a tutor who is a subject specialist. The special teacher preparation model through distance education system is highlighted.
Pasha (2009) assessed that no standardized method is being used for special education. In Pakistan International Classification of Functioning has emerged as a standardized method for measuring health and disability at both individual and population a level. He explored the scope of ICF in the field of special education and has established links between ICF categories and curriculum areas, classroom activities and learning objectives for improving the quality of education. Further research has been recommended to find solutions to overcome the initial problems in adapting ICF framework in the field of Special Education in Pakistan.