The City of Johannesburg recently launched the Jozi iSchool Africa lab inclusive education programme aimed at supporting children with autism, in partnership with Autism SA and iSchoolAfrica.
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Speaking at the launch at the Nokuthula Special School in Lyndhurst, the MMC for Health and Social Development, Dr Mpho Phalatse, said the partnership, aimed at the most vulnerable in the education sector, will add value and enhance the tools needed to teach autistic children.
She said the Jozi lab will help to provide autistic children with the ability to connect with the world through technology.
The Department of Social Development through Phalatse’s grant-funding was able to fund AutismSA to access a programme to benefit 20 children with autism.
Twenty iPads were handed over to the Nokuthula Special School.
“The City has taken a serious stance on Early Childhood Development programmes as one of its diphetogo (evolution) projects, to ensure that children’s human rights of access to quality and inclusive education are realised.
“We are therefore delighted to be the active participants of this great initiative geared towards changing the lives of children with Autism,” she said.
The City’s Department of Social Development and Autism SA in partnership with iSchoolAfrica, aim to empower teachers and learners with educational technology and classroom practises that assist learners who have autism to overcome their learning difficulties.
iSchool Africa managing director Michelle Lissoos said their partnership with the City will further enhance the education of children with special intellectual disabilities, including autism, at the Nokuthula Special School.
She said it is important to support such programmes which will build an inclusive society.
The programme is committed to providing South African children and youths, with special needs, access to technology that will empower them.
“We have seen huge successes with the use of iPads among autistic children. With an iPad, children with autism have even greater opportunities to improve their communication, motor and cognitive skills,” Lissoos said.
“This lab is aimed at providing autistic children with the ability to connect with the world via the power of communication through technology that will enhance their self-worth and address their educational needs.”
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