-as David Rose Special needs school celebrates 50 years
Children with special needs are often neglected by society and therefore would receive negative feedback. But such attitudes towards special needs children over time have gone through a transformation period in Guyana.
This was the observation made by Chief Education Officer, Mr. Marcel Hutson, when he addressed the anniversary ceremony of the David Rose Special School Tuesday.
The David Rose Special School first opened its doors on May 8, 1968. Moreover, the school on Tuesday celebrated 50 years of existence with a ceremony held at the school’s Thomas Lands location.
As he delivered the feature address, Hutson said that the school’s ability to accomplish 50 years is a testimony of resilience and character.
He also revealed that the Ministry of Education is
currently looking to establish an Autism School to be built in the compound of the Cyril Potter College of Education [CPCE] at Turkeyen, East Coast Demerara.
Added to this, the CEO said that Special Education Needs in Guyana is poised to be soon strengthened when the Diagnostic Centre within the said CPCE compound becomes fully operational. That centre became a reality through collaborative efforts of the Ministry of Education, CARICOM and the Cuban Government.
He said that the Ministry of Education has recognised that persons with special needs can be assisted to become functional and to, therefore, fulfil their potential. He urged teachers of the school to continue being individuals with empathy since it is a needed quality so that they can effectively cater to the needs of the school’s students.
Hutson made the commitment that the Ministry of Education, under its current Minister, Ms. Nicolette Henry, will continue to work hard to move the education sector forward.
Meanwhile, Head Teacher of the school, Ms Dionne McKenzie, in her presentation, spoke of the school’s wish list. She said that by 2025, the deaf children of the school must be able to write all national examinations and that there should be adequate diagnosis of children by 2020.
She shared too that the school should have a dietician and a nurse by January 2019.
Also delivering remarks was Fashion Designer, Sonia Noel, who said that it is important to be accommodating and appreciative of persons with special needs. She urged that much attention needs to be given to the area of special education needs to see what more can be done for the children while simultaneously allowing the David Rose Special School to be a model example to other institutions.
During the event, both students and teachers were featured as they performed a number of cultural items while others were honoured.
Among those recognised were past head teachers of the school, past students, organisations that have contributed to the school and some of the long-serving staff.
Some of the private sector entities that were recognised were: The Guyana Defence Force, Scotia Bank Guyana Limited, the Sai Baba Organisation, Global Technology, N and S Mattai and Company, New Building Society, Republic Bank Guyana Limited and PNP Insurance.
Other partners that support the school that were recognised for their efforts were President’s College, Samaritans’ Purse, the Guyana Conference of Seventh Day Adventists, United Women’s Organisation and Sabine McIntosh.
Following the ceremony, attendees were guided to an exhibition prepared by the students and teachers which featured items from the various classes such as craft, agriculture science, cosmetology, dressmaking and art.
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