【英语中国】中国高考将首次出现盲文试卷 The Gaokao: Now Available in Braille

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所属分类:双语中国

2014-4-17 16:33

小艾摘要: China's famously difficult college-entrance exam is about to get easier--or at least for one group of test-takers, more accessible. Across the country, the many blind street performers and massage par ...
The Gaokao: Now Available in Braille
China's famously difficult college-entrance exam is about to get easier--or at least for one group of test-takers, more accessible.

Across the country, the many blind street performers and massage parlors offering treatments from blind masseurs are a testament to the limited opportunities the country's visually impaired individuals can face.

But for the first time, according to a notice from the Ministry of Education, the nation's college-entrance exam will be accessible to the blind or visually impaired, with the government providing exam papers in electronic form or in braille. ( Chinese braille essentially works on a pinyin-like, Romanized alphabet basis--though not always that well, given Mandarin's many homophones.)

Such a move was made, the ministry said, in part to 'enthusiastically show concern and care for test-takers from disadvantaged social groups.'

The move won't affect this summer's crop of test-takers, said Huang Rui, a Henan-based lawyer who works on disability-access issues, as the registration period has already passed. But he said the step should help change the sense of what is possible for the country's visually impaired students. 'Maybe they never thought they could go down the path of taking the gaokao before,' he said, 'but this has opened up a kind of window for them.'

China accounts for about 18% of the world's blind population. While the country makes outwardly visible efforts to cater to the population--city sidewalks, for example, are studded with markers for the blind, but such paths are often more decorative than functional--laws protecting the rights of the disabled are only thinly upheld.

On Wednesday, Human Rights Watch praised the government's latest move, though the nonprofit's researcher Maya Wang also urged caution. 'The test will be whether or not the government will actually provide [accessible] tests in practice,' she said.

In a 75-page report last year, Human Rights Watch--which calls China's estimated 83 million disabled the country's 'largest minority'--found that children with disabilities rarely progress beyond middle school. Some are barred by schools from enrolling, while those who do manage to begin classes face a thicket of obstacles, such as lack of trained staff and an accessible curriculum, the nonprofit said in a report based on 62 interviews conducted across China, mostly with youth with disabilities and their parents.

Access to mainstream colleges is limited, the report found, with Chinese students with disabilities typically restricted to vocational training in special education schools. Accordingly, even if blind students perform well on the gaokao, they'd likely face challenges in finding a school that could--or would be willing--to accommodate their needs.

Given the array of obstacles facing China's disabled students starting from an early age, said Mr. Rui, the ability to take the college-entrance exam is just one of a mountain of problems students face. Still, he praised the move. 'Now at least if they do want to take the test, they know the Ministry of Education at least won't present them with this kind of barrier,' he said.

Associated Press2014年2月24日,美国新泽西,一名学生使用盲文记录机做数学作业。
一向以难度大而著称的中国高考将会变得“简单”一些,或者至少对一个特殊的考生群体来说,更便于参加。

在全国范围,失明的街头艺人和盲人按摩诊所揭示了视障者在中国能获得的有限机会。

但中国教育部的一份通知显示,高考将首次出现电子或盲文试卷,从而使盲人或视障人士也能参加大学入学考试。中国的盲文基本上以类似于汉语拼音的罗马字母为基础,但由于汉字中有许多同音字,因而也不总是容易辨识。

教育部表示,此举在一定程度上是为了热情关爱弱势群体考生。

关注残疾人权益的河南律师黄瑞(音)表示,教育部的这一决定不会对今年夏季高考的考生造成影响,因为高考报名日期已过。

但他说,此举将有助于改变有关中国视障学生未来前途的观念。他说,也许视障者以前从来没想过自己可以参加高考,而这一消息在某种意义上为他们打开了一扇窗户。

中国的盲人数量约占全世界盲人总数的18%。为服务这一群体,中国也做了一些表面上可以看到的努力,比如在城市的人行道上设置盲道。但这些盲道的装饰意义通常大于实用意义,保护残疾人权益的法律贯彻执行得还不够有力。

非营利组织人权观察(Human Rights Watch)周三赞扬了中国教育部的这一决定,但该组织的研究人员Maya Wang也呼吁保持谨慎。她说,要看政府是否真的在实际中提供便于视障者参加的考试。

去年人权观察在一份长达75页的报告中将中国估计有8,300万的残疾人称为中国“最大的少数群体”。这份报告发现,中国的残疾儿童很少能在读完中学之后继续深造。该组织在这份报告中称,一些残疾儿童被学校拒之门外,而那些有幸入学的残疾儿童却面临重重障碍,比如缺乏受过专业培训的老师和便于残疾儿童参与的课程。这份报告是根据在全国的62次采访编写的,其中大部分是对残疾青年及其父母的采访。

该报告发现,中国的残疾学生上主流大学的机会有限,一般都被限定在特殊教育学校接受职业培训。因此,盲人考生即便在高考中表现出色,可能也很难找到能够或者愿意满足他们需要的学校。

黄瑞说,中国残疾学生从小就面临重重障碍,能否参加高考只是他们面临的诸多问题之一。不过,他赞扬了教育部的这一决定。他说,至少现在如果残疾学生确实想参加高考,他们知道教育部至少不会给他们设置这种障碍。

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