By Lian Saifi, Communications Specialist at Generations For Peace
In 2021, Generations For Peace launched The Parents-Teachers Cooperation Programme implemented under GIZ-Promoting Quality in Inclusive Education in Jordan (PROMISE) Programme on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), and in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, the Higher Council for the Rights of Persons with Disability, and I am a Human Society for Rights of Disabled People. The six-month program aimed to enhance the learning outcomes of students, particularly students with disabilities in light of the COVID-19 situation that affected their learning process. The program focused on increasing capacities amongst parents and teachers about inclusive Home Learning Activities and at improving collaborative relationships amongst parents and teachers to strengthen existing platforms and strengthen sustainability actions by engaging relevant stakeholders and education communities.
The Parents-Teachers Cooperation Program targeted parents and teachers from 6 different schools in Marka, Ajloun and AlKarak field directorates and reached 144 direct and 606 indirect beneficiaries.
Alia is a mother of four, she was one of the participants in the Parents-Teachers Cooperation Programme. She holds a diploma in Pharmacy and her aspiration to support her family has led her to work as a bus driver for school students in both one-shift and double-shift schools every day. Her youngest child was born prematurely and has been facing problems with memories ever since. She has always had faith in her son’s abilities. Helping her son and other children with disabilities and learning difficulties has been her main drive, This, in combination with her passion to learn, led her to join the Parents-Teachers Cooperation Campaign Program.
“I am a bus driver; I have always aspired to assist students with disabilities that daily ride the bus with me. I always remind children and students on my bus that good deeds do not go unnoticed. Allah “God” always counts virtuous deeds when they help their colleagues”
Through the programme, Alia attended theoretical sessions in Prince Hassan Co-Ed Elementary School in Amman on key concepts related to disability and Inclusive Learning. This has helped her improve her knowledge about disability-related definitions and frameworks. She also joined the advanced sessions on Differentiating Instruction, Assistive Technologies, Critical Self-management Skills, Critical Interpersonal and Relational Skills, and Advocacy that have helped her assess her son’s case and enhance her connection and cooperation with the teachers at school.
“We should never give up. I used to stress a lot in the beginning and wanted my son to improve quickly, but you cannot climb the stairs from the top. I have learned that one should be patient even if the process is slow. We need to acknowledge that people have different capabilities, and we must accept it and deal with it to help them improve.”
Through the new skills she developed in the past two months, Alia is now more attentive to the educational challenges that her son faces and started spending more time engaging and repeating things to him utilizing the home learning activities tools provided by the program.
Alia’s son, Hamzeh who is only seven, faces challenges with basic mathematics and in pronouncing the alphabet. Using the wire Moulding exercises and the colored balls, Alia explained, that she had witnessed major improvements. Her son was enjoying the exercises and getting creative himself using toothpicks, spaghetti, and cotton buds to shape numbers and letters. Alia has involved the entire family, his father and three older brothers to engage further with Hamzeh and has also mentioned that the engagement with teachers through Zoom has enhanced her relationship and the opportunity to discuss her son’s development with the teachers in school.