Leaving no child behind
Children with and without disabilities interacting
The Al Hussein Society is a leading Jordanian NGO that provides a range of rehabilitation and educational programmes and services for people with disabilities.
Children with disabilities who are not exposed to environmental and educational stimulants might not be accepted in mainstream schools based on simple below average IQ assessments. To overcome this problem since 2009, the Society has run an intensive one-year course to prepare children with disabilities for joining mainstream schools. A multidisciplinary team provides services such as tuition and therapy, followed by an assessment. By 2019, 111 children with disabilities were enrolled in the program, with 77 admitted to mainstream schools.
The one-year intensive programme provides children aged 6–10 and their families with a tailored programme to support their learning via such services as occupational therapy, assistive technology, and support from special education specialists, along with the creation of individual education plans. The services are designed to help children to prepare for and pass the entrance exam, which students with disabilities must take in order to be admitted into grade 1 of mainstream schools in Jordan.
Enablers / Barriers:
Since the programme began, the Al Hussein Society has been successful in integrating an average of 65 per cent of children into mainstream schools, with a rate of almost 85 per cent in 2018/19. Aside from its focus on school admittance, the programme improves students’ behaviour, participation in society, and social skills development.
Replication of this practice is possible if the same circumstances can be created, for example a suitably trained network of rehabilitation and therapy professionals, plus parents willing to support their children in learning the skills necessary for first grade.
In the future, the Al Hussein Society plans to share the model and results of the practice with all institutions, associations, schools, and decision makers in Jordan and the wider Arab world.
Al Hussein Society
Training, coaching, supporting
Mainstream education, Inclusion, Preparation