Inclusion: An Innovative approach to Education Support
One of the many issues faced by children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder is anxiety, which can severely impact on their ability to learn, develop friendships and function appropriately in the community. The Education Support Unit provides a facility and the staff to help students regulate their own anxiety levels in a carefully designed sensory room. The Education Support Unit contributes to making the school environment a productive and pleasant place to learn.
There are weekly intensive social and communication training classes for primary students – Kids’ Café and secondary students – ‘Teens CAFÉ’ (Communication and Friendship Education). Students will learn effective communication and social skills so they can develop and maintain appropriate friendships with their peers, learn about emotions such as anxiety, and how to manage them and improve self-esteem through a variety of games and activities.
Nilai International School is committed to transforming children into individuals capable of living in and contributing to their society. In addition, the Education Support Unit provides students with an Autism Spectrum Disorder, the opportunity to develop skills needed to reach their full potential.
Conditions of Acceptance
- Before a child is accepted into Nilai International School he/she will undergo an assessment at Shine Child Guidance Centre.
- Upon recommendation from Shine, the students will then be assessed by the Education Support Unit in order to develop an individual learning program specifically catered to their strengths and needs.
Western Autistic School Program for Students with Aspergers Syndrome
- Provide an academic program
- Develop spontaneous communication
- Develop social skills and interactions
- Develop strategies to maintain appropriate behaviour
- Broaden and develop leisure activities
- Provide an environment structured so as to encourage self-regulation, self expression and the freedom to achieve their full potential
- Promote independence, healthy self-esteem and maintain the dignity of all students, always.
- Nurture the acquisition of life skills necessary to enable successful integration into the greater community
- Provide a predictable and safe environment by establishing routines, using structured activities and visual supports such as schedules.
- Facilitate the development of interpersonal skills by providing structured activities with set patterns and roles with the focus on the social process rather than the end product. Staff use a variety of teaching methods and facilitate modelling, practise and rehearsal to establish the social skills required for students to navigate their way through from the playground to the wider community.
- Expose students to a range of age-appropriate leisure activities that encourage active socialisation and limit time spent on solitary activities such as computer games.
SHINE GUIDANCE CENTRE
Shine focuses on helping families with members (children or adult), who have developmental disabilities such as autism spectrum disorders, as well as learning disabilities, to meet functional independence at the highest possible level. Our team of clinical psychologists, occupational therapist and therapy assistants are appropriately qualified and trained to provide or assist in assessments, consultations and interventions to improve overall independent living skills.
Shine provides standardised psychological assessments for adaptive behaviour skills, cognitive abilities and specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, so as to help with deciding for school or vocational placements, behavior modification strategies, skills training and further remedial needs. Shine also provides occupational therapy services for individuals to improve on activities of daily living (ADL) as part of independent functioning.
Inclusion means involving selected students in NIS to receive additional assistance from the Education Support Unit. These students will be provided with coping strategies to deal with learning issues in communication, social skills and creativity through an Individual Learning Program. The students study alongside their peers.
The Special Education program requires the students to attend the program on a full time basis and is excluded from mainstream education. Our Education Support Unit is offering extra assistance to students in the mainstream school and function alongside the school’s curriculum.
The unit is comprised of a team of highly qualified and experienced teachers trained in Special Education, specializing in the field of Autism Spectrum Disorders. We have staff coming from a prestigious school in Australia (Western Autistic School) specializing in educating students with autism and Aspergers Syndrome. The team is supported by trained specialists and therapists who would conduct assessments and tests for entry into the unit and frequent updates on their progress.
A relaxation and sensory room is available to assist students to learn to self regulate body responses to anxiety and stress, typical in students with Aspergers Syndrome and high functioning autism. The Education Support is specially structured and organized to cater for the individual needs of the students. Fine motor and gross motor equipments are provided in the unit to accommodate their needs.