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Tuesday 26 March 2019
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Most public schools don’t meet children’s needs

LOCUST LESSON: Nadine Chin Hong gives one of her students a lesson on the body parts of locust during an open house yesterday at the British Academy in St Clair. PHOTO BY AYANNA KINSALE
LOCUST LESSON: Nadine Chin Hong gives one of her students a lesson on the body parts of locust during an open house yesterday at the British Academy in St Clair. PHOTO BY AYANNA KINSALE

CHILDREN in TT have diverse needs for education, but through no fault of their own, most schools cannot facilitate some of them.

In an interview at the British Academy’s Open House on Alexandra Street, St Clair yesterday, vice principal Aneefa Ali said a lot of parents are not happy with the numbers in the local system, the stresses of SEA and the performance level of most schools.

Ali said the purpose of the Open House was to allow parents to know they have alternatives. She said the major reason some children are left behind after the SEA exam is that teachers may not be trained to deal with different levels of understanding.

“We have to be realistic about the fact that our children have diverse needs in TT. What we found is that given the right environment, any child can do well. This includes children with learning disabilities and special education needs.

“Obviously, we are limited in terms of the level of disability that we can work with: we are not a special education school, so we cannot cater for very severe learning disabilities.

But children who do suffer from dyslexia, autism (but it depends on the severity)… but we have had children who have gone on to do quite well, even at Form Five level.”

Ali said the British Academy offers the United Kingdom’s national curriculum from kindergarten to A-levels, from five to 18. The school offers a curriculum that helps students become confident, responsible, reflective, innovative and engaged, she said. Principal Judith King Pereira said the academy is a private primary and secondary school that offers the United Kingdom National curriculum which prepares students to be critical thinkers, problem solvers and life learners.

She said the school was established in 2006 and students at the school become better equipped with the skills needed to work and be successful in the future.

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