By anguillian March 13, 2015 10:01



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As part of the Special Needs Week of activities an exhibition was held at the Orealia Kelly Primary School on Tuesday 10 March. The exhibition was set up to build awareness that these children can do things. There were displays from the various units; the Blossom Centre in the Quarter, the Dove Centre at West End, which caters for children with extreme mobility and communication limitations, the Unit at Adrian T Hazel which caters for those with moderate learning difficulties, the unit at Orealia Kelly which caters for those with severe learning difficulties, the unit at the Valley Primary which caters for those with emotional and behavioural difficulties and the units at Campus A and B.

Displayed were arts and crafts, creative class projects (such as learning to save money), display of workbooks and poetry, paintings and drawings among other items.

According to Education Officer, Mrs Jacqueline Jeffrey Connor, “What happens is that a lot of the public do not know what happens in the classroom in terms of special needs children… so we wanted to showcase samplings of what the children engage in on a daily basis at the different units. It is another way to let the public know that we do cater to this group – as each unit is for a different population. So they can get an understanding that within the schools we do have provision for children with special needs, no matter the level… Our mission is to ensure that we start from a very young age – even in pre-school we have children that the blossom centre works with. We work together with them and then in primary school we ensure that the process is continued, likewise in high school… One thing I am happy about is that in our Special Needs Units all our lead teachers are qualified special needs teachers. So that is a plus for us. It’s a leap we have made over the last three years and in some of the units we have a ratio of 3:1 as we have Teaching Assistants on staff as well – so yes the children do get a lot of help – they are worthy – they are valuable – and we do serve these children in special needs… There is a lot for us to do, but compared to when I joined the service 17 years ago, we’ve come a long way – in terms of teacher/student ratio – in terms of resources – in terms of classroom provision; there’s been a lot of investment put into this area… I must say that whenever we reach out to the business community for anything for this population the response is very good… Sometimes the special needs children are the most expensive in terms of what they require – But, in my opinion, your education system is not as good as you think it is, unless you are serving that group of children. If you could see these children making progress, then you know everyone is making progress.”

Mrs. Jacqueline Jeffrey - Connor

Mrs. Jacqueline Jeffrey – Connor

By anguillian March 13, 2015 10:01


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