Focus on deaf education

About 40 people took part in a course on deaf education in Rondebosch.

A pilot course, held in Rondebosch late last month, explored ways to improve education for the deaf.

The course is part of the Teacher Empowerment for Disability Inclusion (TEDI) project – a partnership between UCT and Christoffel-Blinden Mission, a non-profit organisation.

According to TEDI project manager Thandi Henkeman it offers training on how to teach deaf pupils.

About 40 people, some coming from as far afield as Knysna and Mthatha, took part.

Khumbulani Mshiywa,a teaching assistant at St Thomas School in King William’s Town, said the course had, among other things, taught them how to put transformation policies into practice.

Desiree Smith, from Somerset West, teaches hairstyling at the Mary Kihn School for partially hearing children.

“I learned a lot, especially about the children who have cochlear implants. I wasn’t even aware
that they could swim with it,” she said.

The course also looked at the impact of technology on deaf pupils, support for pupils’ families, safety, barriers to education, and literacy-teaching methods.

Odette Swift, of DeafSA, convended the course. She said it had taken 18 months to develop the content.

“We have received positive
critique from our participants that will help us as we move forward from the pilot because this short course will be offered continuously and participant feedback will help us refine the course to be better,” she said.

Visit www.dhrs.uct.ac.za/dhrs/divisions/disability/tedi/courses for more information.