Teachers from East Berbice-Corentyne participated in a Special Education Needs and Disabilities (SEN) workshop, hosted by the Department of Education, last week, in Region 6.

The two-day programme, held in the auditorium of the Saint Aloysius Primary School, is among a list of activities to be undertaken by the department as the world observes Autism Awareness in April.

The initiative was attended by 60 teachers drawn from both Primary and Secondary schools. Education Officer and one of the coordinators, Olda Fraser disclosed that the workshop aims to have parents and teachers become aware that there is provision made for children with special needs.news 20190411 6

“That is why we decided to host a teacher methodology workshop, which was planned so that teachers can be helped in terms of various teaching strategies that they can use, not only with children who have special needs but those who are in the mainstream classes.”

Fraser noted that the educators benefited from sessions which now allow them to effectively teach the school’s curriculum to suit each child in the various grades. Teachers were also informed about literacy instructions for diverse learners which focused mainly on the use of the ‘big books’ in the classrooms.

She said a presentation was done on positive behaviour and how teachers can substitute corporal punishment with positive behaviour and motivation strategies to discipline pupils.

Participants were also educated on the different types of learning disabilities such as autism, dyslexia, dyscalculia, dyspraxia and dysgraphia.

Teacher for over 10 years, and participant, Ashan Bacchus, speaking with the Department of Public Information (DPI), described the two-day workshop as successful.news 20190411 5 “I found it very helpful to teachers. For the past two days, we were given enough information as to how we can deal with children with special needs. The presentations were outstanding and clear; some would even make you become emotional to see how you can impact the lives of children regardless of their ethnic background.”

The Ministry of Education has been hosting similar SEN workshops across the regions. The objective is to advocate the importance of special education through public awareness and alliance building and to pave the way for the SEN Unit to advance its work in the delivery of its services.