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Screen_Shot_2013-12-04_at_8.09.28_PMIt could be said that it is just part of human nature to not be interested in some things or worry, even, about others once the problem or situation does not affect us or our homes directly. However, the hope is that the public change that attitude as it relates to special needs children. In an effort to spread the awareness of this, teachers and students at Saint Peter’s Anglican Primary School teamed up to share their experiences and knowledge of the subject to the general public. As part of Disability Week being observed throughout the country, here’s a look at what the Orange Walk students were busy doing today on campus.

Dalila Ical – Reporting


The Special Education Department at Saint Peter’s Anglican Primary School works directly with at least thirty special needs children who each have different needs as it relates to autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, and learning disabilities to name a few.


These are conditions that many children face, children who for some unfortunate reason or the other are unable to access the services and attention offered at the school. It is also a very real part of the lives of many people who may not be properly informed on how to properly care for affected children.


To help, these standard six students at the primary school prepared an open day at the school to share some important information of these conditions so that parents and guardians can best help their child.

Keinie Ubando and her team discussed autism.


Keinie Ubando – Student

“It’s a developmental disability characterized by the deficits in social interaction, impairment in communication and repetitive patterns or behaviours and interest.  It is called a spectrum since its severity ranges from mild to severe.”


And the girls stress that autism is not a disease; the children deserve an opportunity.


Keinie Ubando – Student

“Don’t try to cure us but try to understand us.”


Dalila ical – Reporter


“What do you mean by that, don’t try to cure us, but try to understand us, why is that word important?”


Keinie Ubando – Student


“That word is like nearly a proverb, right, that means like see they were born with that so that you can’t help it you can’t cure it, they were born with that you can’t cure it so just leave them like that, try to understand them, try to help them don’t try to cure them.”


Dalila Ical – Reporter


“Have more patience.”


Keinie Ubando – Student


“Have more patience; they can do something good in their lives.”


Dalila Ical – Reporter


“So you would encourage parents to support their child when they are artistic and encourage the public to do the same.”


Keinie Ubando – Student


“Because yes, because believe me because I would say that some parents when their child is born like that , they would say  they are useless, they are good for nothing because they have a simple disorder but autism is not a disease it is syndrome or disorder.”


Nayeli Gonzalez and her team shared more on Down syndrome and also emphasize that every life has value.


Nayelie Gonzalez – Students

“Down syndrome is a chromosomal disorder caused by the error in the cell and they can’t grow tall because if they something is wrong with the cell that actually they stay small and chubby.


Dalila Ical – Reporter


“Does Down Syndrome have a cure?”


Nayelie Gonzalez – Students


“No it doesn’t have a cure but they can live normal lives and they are actually healthy and actually what they need is a little bit of love and patience.”


The students were accompanied by the Special Education Department. Teacher Dianelli Medina says that while exams may have kept back some students from visiting the school, the public was supportive.


Dianelli Medina – Special Education Teacher

“The parents have been very supportive, especially the Special Ed’s parents, they have been here from early helping us to set up and everything so we are really happy to have them here.”


Dalila Ical – Reporter


“But what about parents from other children that you would classified under normal or the general public, have they shown interest in this particular topic?”


Dianelli Medina – Special Education Teacher


“Yes, a lot of parents came to ask questions and they have visited our booths and taken along some brochure and information, I guess they got a lot, even our TV has been showing information; some sign language videos, videos on down syndrome, how down syndrome’s students act in a regular classroom and what all you can accomplish for a child in a regular classroom.”


Dalila Ical – Reporter


“Overall, the response has been positive supportive for not only the school but the students?”


Dianelli Medina – Special Education Teacher


“Definitely and I think that our community is becoming more aware of the different disabilities that we are finding out and the new ones too because we have been noticing more down syndrome or learning disabilities but we are learning a lot more even us teacher when we did the research we learnt a lot from it.”


And there was much learning to do because even students like Sulmi Valencia, a deaf student, gave some lessons to visitors.


Sulmi Valencia

“I tell them the people to sign the alphabet and I ask them if they know it and if they don’t I teach them and they practise until they understand, we also read some of the books there in sign language and we read them.”


Dalila Ical – Reporter


“So how has the response been?”


Sulmi Valencia


“I am hoping that they continue learning after they leave it been well.”


If you were unable to make it today to the Saint Peter’s Anglican Primary School Open Day, and you are interested in learning more on disabilities in children you can visit the institution any day and be informed.

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