This past August we hosted our Annual General Meeting in the form of an Inclusive Education Mini-Symposium. Six of our IESA staff facilitated sessions with regards to Inclusive Education in South Africa and its impact in Schools, ECD Centres and the country. We received an overwhelming response and hope to host more events like this in the future!
Our Schools Facilitator, Elsie Bulawa, has been working in Canzibe Primary School, and presenting workshops with regards to Curriculum differentiation. This past week, Grade Three pupils, were working on differentiated lessons as the teachers were enthusiastically putting what was taught into practice. We enjoy walking the journey alongside our educators, and stakeholders and celebrate the milestones as they come.
We continue to partner with other organisations in order to raise awareness of the exclusion that often exists. Currently, we are partnering with Open Up in a venture to share the stories of parents and their efforts to include their children in our education system. This past week one of our parents were interviewed Khayelitsha and we are proud to see that parents are empowered and given an opportunity to be heard.
IESA is partnering with 36 schools in the Moteo District to support them as they start their journey towards becoming inclusive schools. The initial focus will be on strengthening school based structures (The SMT and SBST) to understand their roles in implementing inclusive policy and practice at the school, as well as supporting Foundation Phase teachers to develop good inclusive teaching pedagogy. IESA will follow a multi model approach using face-to-face workshops, mentoring and coaching meetings as well as PLCs to achieve this. Inter school PLCs will promote sharing of experiences and strategies between colleagues from different schools with different challenges and solutions. The goal of the first 5 months of the inclusive schools work with the 36 schools is to introduce the schools to Inclusive education, set up…
This two-day training is funded by the Western Cape Department of Social Development and is an orientation for ECD Practitioners and Family and Community Motivators (FCMs) to Inclusive Education. Through the training, participants begin to demonstrate increased awareness of barriers to learning, as well as a change in attitude toward accommodating children in their centres who are experiencing barriers to learning and participation.
This pilot project was implemented at The Lesedi Association, whose management and staff were eager to participate in the pilot. The aim was to build on our previous programmes with ECD Service Providers and training organisations to infuse inclusive practices into their training and service offerings. Through the pilot we aimed to develop an inclusive model and set of resources to be replicated in other ECD oraganisations across the country. We thank the Lesedi association who focused all their efforts on implementing strategies to ensure that all their programmes reflected best inclusive practice.
This has been the second year of support to these full service schools. There has been a significant focus on strengthening the SBSTs at these schools as the structures that organise support for learners and teachers. Further strategies for including all learners and addressing barriers to learning have also beeen a focus. We have seen very positive results, especially an improvement in access to reading - which was identified as a barrier to learning. The functioning of the SBSTs has improved as a direct result of the Pilot PLC, funded by de Beers Trust.