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Testimony of Ms. Rosine Ahonlonsou, Director of the inclusive school Hibiscus in Cotonou, Benin

  • Childhood : Special Education
  • Africa : Benin
  • Témoignage

Par Handiplanet le 28/12/2016

Ms. Ahonlonsou has created the Hibiscus school in 1990. After she met the RBC, - community based rehabilitation, she opened her school to children with special needs, having a developmental disability or a cerebral palsy. The school is an inclusive mainstream school with kindergarten and primary section. located in a district of Cotonou-Akpakpa it now houses about 200 children whose disabilities 30.

Testimony of Ms. Ahonlonsou Rosine, Director of the inclusive school Hibiscus in Cotonou

 

I was initially a teacher in history geography. I had the opportunity to teach this discipline in secondary schools in Gabon. Every Thursday there was discipline tips. I touched there finger, what I call 'the unnecessary problems': namely the transgressive behaviour developed by children. Problems that adults could avoid if they had a harmonious relationship with their children. I connect it also to lack of listening princip. I thought: ' finished high school, I returned to the base and I give my time to these little children who need to talk and be listened to. "

In 1990, back from Gabon, I create the Hibiscus school for children in kindergarten.

I then met - community based rehabilitation - RBC, and the world of disability. It was very moving, I had never seen so much suffering. But every day there was a fact that told me that the disabled child is not what you believe. I started taking a child with a disability, two, then three at nursery school. Their families did not pay when they came.

Parents not wanting their children to go elsewhere after kindergarten, I opened the primary at Hibiscus. I then discovered that at primary school disabled children are doing as well as children without disabilities. I remember a child who has had polio. Fragile, it was so overcoved by his mother that he had developed a fear of the other and the environment, almost pathological. The affection he received here in school enabled him to go out of this world of anxiety and to socialise. Today he has his Bachelor's degree and works in an audit office.

We welcome about 200 children, including 30 children with disabilities, including children with cerebral palsy, autism, impaired hearing, with Down syndrome, with intellectual delays of indeterminate or with multiple disabilities origin.

Welcoming the disabled child changes our view of the world. By accepting, I noticed that our teaching method was not appropriate. Their attention could not be sustained as the others. This led me to train and educate teachers, showing them what they can win to change their methods of teaching.

My girls did the french program at the Lycée Montaigne, less rigorous than the national of Benin. I am inspired because it has diagrams and other variances allowing the child to understand more quickly than by reading or copying of a series of words. If the child is not his account, he gets bored. I bought the puzzle, card games like Ludo, for awakening mind. I adapted more flexible methods. The work of the master was to give the minimum and when I perceived that the child was interested, I was building him the evening. Therefore, I have noticed that some children understood very well the program and I could send them to the exams.

Currently there is  a psychologist, a physiotherapist, a speech therapist working with children. We trained teachers in the psychomotricity. Children requiring specialized courses out of the class for their class time and come back.

We have implemented the educational plan individualized for all children with disabilities. Previously it was the psycho-educator  which made them, today, the teachers do it under supervision of psycho-educator.

The masters when they have a child with special needs in their classes vary their teaching and adapted it. They have a real pride of all these children to reach the goal with their difference.

Three of the five children went to the examination successfully. We asked for them  extenuating conditions, such as extra time from 15 to 25'. The fight that I now leads, is to allow these children to oral assessment and that we can make them different tests with sketches and not only theoretical questions.

People with autism have school assistants. We set this up this year to see. They continue to run and scream, but that does not disturb or nobody anymore. The assistants are involved in the class nearby the child. This is costly and has been accepted by some parents. This does not exclude the intervention of the teacher. The assistant follows his individualized educational project .

Some children are very limited. They don't have the ability to make school acquisitions. They are still in classes. After a while, the child comes out, it takes an educational game, until he finds others in the Court.

In addition to 8 teachers who each have a class, four trained teachers especially and three assictants are the teaching team. Some masters have a quota of disabled children which they are responsible.

It's nice to see non-disabled children and children with disabilities living in this school. Sometimes we fall from the clouds. There are gestures that are extraordinary. . I am convinced that our children will live in the acceptance of difference.   Noone one can live alone happy. I wish the inclusive system touch every scholl. Happy children make blossomed adults.

 

Ms. Ahonlonsou Rosine

Inclusive school Hibiscus.

Neighborhood Jak Cotnou

Tel: 00229 97483877

Rosine.ahonlonsou@gmail.com

 

 

 

Langue d'origine : Français
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