2014

False Bay College Hosts UCT Occupational Therapy Students

Adele Ebrahim

“There has been an increasing acceptance that people with disabilities can play active roles in transforming their own lives and can contribute to society. Access to proper education and training opportunities is fundamental to this and education institutions have to be transformed in several ways if equity for people with disabilities is to be fully achieved.”

 

White paper for post-school education and training, 2013: 44

The University of Cape Town’s department of Occupational Therapy requested False Bay College to assist in hosting their 5th year students for the practical learning component of their studies. The students were based at the Muizenberg and Khayelitsha campuses and were tasked with assisting in “developing an inclusive community” at False Bay College.

Inclusive Education means an environment where all students learn together in one classroom and everyone is welcomed regardless of their background, ethnicity, disability or language.

False Bay College started working on the goals for inclusive education in 2004 and developed a model to foster integration of students with a range of disabilities. The model strives for flexibility in meeting the spectrum of learning and training needs required.

Six occupational therapy students spent a total of 7 weeks each at FBC under the guidance of two inclusive education officers, who are qualified Occupational Therapists. The students undertook in-depth needs analyses and then developed their campaign plans, which include:

  1. Training staff and students around teaching and learning strategies focusing on the students’ learning style.
  2. Creating an online platform for lecturers in order to stimulate information sharing, peer support and interaction around the issues pertaining to inclusive education and disability.
  3. Engaging with the Student Representative Council members to raise awareness about students with disabilities and how to include all students in student-led activities.

These campaigns are new and exciting developments in the realm of Inclusive Education in the TVET sector as they support and enhance the current work being done to support students with disabilities. It is envisaged that these campaigns will be further developed and managed by the IE officers so that support to students with disabilities can be further improved.