Teach Middle East Magazine Apr - Jun 2020 Issue 3 Volume 7 - Page 23

Featured School pedagogy and assessment. My goal was to support teachers in acquiring that understanding and then we could implement the required changes to ensure a truly inclusive environment. of determination, those without disability tend to hold fewer prejudices about people with disability and are more open to socially interacting with them. Sustained contact between students with and without disabilities develops school and classroom climates in which the membership of all students is valued. It was with this in mind, that led to the partnership between the Aquila School and the Hemam teams, as we determined how to move forward. The Hemam Learning Support Center situated within The Aquila School aims to meet the needs of children with significant and complex learning needs, primarily autism.  It offers ABA therapy, occupational therapy and speech and language therapy.  All children are on the school roll and they range in age from 5 to 9.  When I joined the school as Head of Inclusion in February 2019, I found that there was little inclusion of these pupils and class teachers had little or no involvement with them.  For inclusive education to succeed, educators need a deep understanding of both curriculum content and learner diversity. This knowledge enables them to overcome barriers in curriculum, Class Time A number of changes were required, some more easily achieved than others. There are now regular meetings between key Hemam staff and myself, and also with the school's wider leadership team to discuss issues, plan and agree actions that will improve inclusion and education for these children. Pupils attending Hemam now have agreed inclusion timetables so that teachers know when they will attend lessons and plan accordingly. Class teachers know that they have a responsibility for the academic learning of these children, and they draw up IEPs and meet with parents regularly to share the IEP, review progress and ensure a collaborative approach. In addition, transition planning ensured that each child finished the last school year with a booklet including photos of key people who would be supporting them as well as some of the children in their new class. Where possible, they also had opportunities Term 3 Apr - Jun 2020 23