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|Friday, September 21, 2001, updated at 17:34(GMT+8)|
China's 1st Hearing Recovery College Set upChina's first college to train professionals how to assist the deaf with hearing and language skills opened Friday.
The inaugural ceremony of the Beijing Hearing and Language Recovery Technology College was attended by Deng Pufang, chairman of the China Disabled Persons' Federation, and officials from the Beijing city government and the Ministry of Education.
China currently has 800,000 deaf children under the age of seven.
Li Ka-shing, the well-known Hong Kong-based tycoon who donated an unspecified sum of money to the special education project, sent a letter of congratulations to the ceremony.
Deng addressed an audience of hundreds including 103 newly-recruited students for the college who aim to help young children recover their hearing and language abilities after the two-year study.
Deng thanked the HK entrepreneur and called the setting-up of the school a great event in China's efforts to help its 20 million handicapped population, especially those with hearing and language difficulties.
The college, jointly sponsored by the federation and the Beijing Union University, plans to train 500 teachers for local hearing and language recovery centers across the country by 2005.
These centers are expected to help some 20,000 deaf children annually.
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