Aurora International School is the first in our society to work with special needs children
Question: Can you please tell a little about you self?
Answer: I am Fouzia Ali, and I am working as a Vice Principal at Global Montessori Coaching Institute. Also, I am running two Branches of Aurora International School. Psychology and Education were my primary subjects; I joined a school after graduation. I love kids, so that’s the main reason I joined this field, and it’s a journey of 25 years for me in this field. I can say that I have 25 years of experience in this field. I worked as a teacher, as a coordinator, and also as a principal, as I am now an owner of a school as well. As far as my experience is concerned, it is primarily early-age kids, like playgroup, nursery, kindergarten, and grade 1. I also run my own academy, which emphasizes slow learners.
Question: What is your preference of admission comes to your academy?
Answer: I welcome mostly average students in my academy. My Preference was not to have an intelligent student or a student who had an average of 80+, but I worked with intermediate students, and they achieved 80%. I am still working on reading and writing for kids. As far as my training is concerned, it includes ECCE (Early Childhood Care Education), Montessori teachers’ training, English phonics, and Urdu phonics. I design an Urdu phonics course by myself.
Question: As a trainer what are the main task you focus on?
Answer: I also trained the teachers in GMCI and went to other cities for teacher training. The main focus of my training is “Special Needs.” One is those who are disabled, but another category is “other-able.” Kids who have other abilities. At GMCI (Global Montessori Coaching Institute), we are giving awareness about these kids to the parents and teachers.
Question: What are the basic requirements or needs of these kids?
Answer: Special needs kids face problems like autism, dyslexia, Attention deficiency, and speech issues. So in my training, there is a particular part in which I explain these issues. There are many reasons behind these issues in kids like they are not getting proper attention or more screen time can also cause these issues in kids. As a teacher, I experienced that when any special need kid is in your class, they get ignored. So I started working on them because I saw that special needs kids were ignored in many school systems. So I worked with them in my class when I was a teacher. If I can work with them, then why not they work with others faculty members? So at that point, slow learners can work.
In my school, we started an inclusive system where I hired special-needs coordinators. They are clinical psychologists. Before beginning this inclusive system in both branches, I also trained my teachers. Virtual Autism means parents provide a tablet or phone to their kids at a very early age. So that damages the mind of the child. On the other side, parent’s believed that the kid is happy and learning. There are some primary symptoms of autism, no eye-contact, aggressive behavior, they don’t take command, lining up things, walk on their toes. There is also a speech delay as well. They respond to Cellphones and tablets. You can control autism, from mild to moderate, as you can’t altogether remove it.
Question: As you are lecturing on autism, don’t you think people are responding to you appropriately?
Answer: I am not a doctor or clinical psychologist, but my personal experiences made me lean toward these things. Aurora International school is the first in our society to work with special needs children as I have introduced an inclusive system. So I created unique study plans for these children. Parents, psychologist, and school management is involved in the study plan for these kids, which was planned separately for each kid. We do assessments and worksheets according to that as well.
Question: As a community, how much part can our government play in giving awareness?
Answer: People are not taking it seriously as they are not ready to accept this; they are unprepared for the disaster. Our next generation is going to face things like this a lot.
There are many things we need to adopt in our system and in our school where we must adapt according to kids, their needs, their particular attention, and their planned curriculum. Early childhood care and education must be necessary for mothers, as they need to understand how to bring up a kid. From 0-3 years, we need to work on our kids and provide them with a better space with special needs to bring them up.
Question: what is the feedback of the parents?
Answer: Alhamdulillah, they are very much satisfied. We are giving one-to-one sessions, as they trust me and believe I can do my best for their kids.
At last, our society and system have to own these kids. Awareness should be spread. I own them, and I want that everyone to hold them. Also, come towards inclusive systems in our schools. Parents have to be vigilant. They don’t have to wait. They must act according to the situation.