Special Education Needs in Schools Are Being Met
During the past year, the Ministry of Education established a Special Education Unit, which has been working diligently to address the needs of differently-abled students across the country. The SpEd Unit has been able to successfully implement a curriculum that is specially designed to target these students’ needs and ensure that they achieve their full potential. The implementation of the curriculum has resulted in improved academic performance, greater engagement, and a more inclusive learning environment. The Special Education Program Coordinator at the Ministry of Education’s SpEd Unit, Christy Almeida, explains that the unit is committed to continuing to provide support to students with special needs. She adds that they are also focusing on how to further expand their reach.
Christy Almeida, Special Education Coordinator, Ministry of Health Special Ed Unit: “It’s been an intense year. We just did a report on what we have done in a year as a unit, the special education officers and this entire unit have been working really hard to see how we can work smarter and work better for our families. Part of that is these public awareness stuff, part of it is how do we provide better services for our families, part of it is how are we training our teachers and we have done a lot for that. Last year alone we did over 24 different trainings with teachers across this country. You know we now have an MOU with Therapy Adventures so upstairs where we had a big fancy conference room is now a clinic and therapies are taking place. So if you peek in right now there are therapists working with our kids. I mean these are small steps and there’s a lot more that need to be done but these are things we’re doing. We’ve been building capacities for our officers. We introduced IEPs to this country. You know we had a couple private schools that were doing it but generally nothing was happening. Now all of these schools across this country we’ve been working on them. Some of the classrooms in Stella Maris the entire classroom now are on their own IEPs. Before there wasn’t a curriculum for these things and now we’ve launched in six pilot schools a Essential for Living Curriculum that’s a first. We have a detailed curriculum with a web app, 54 teachers just completed a full training last week we have been uploading their certificates for that, we have a live Zoom on Thursday and then they start screening each individual child using this curriculum.”