A leader in inquiry-based, child-centered education, HKA is one of the few schools in Hong Kong that provides opportunities for students with special needs to be integrated into the mainstream classroom. Between 10% to 15% of HKA students receive some level of learner support ranging from mild to intensive. HKA’s philosophy firmly supports the belief that all students benefit from an environment where students requiring support are a part of the inclusive classroom. HKA’s staff includes dedicated Learner Support professionals; in addition, all teachers at HKA receive on-going professional development to support their instruction within an inclusive school.
Learner Support students at HKA are integrated into the mainstream classroom. HKA has taken the lead in the region, offering a fully supported inclusion model. HKA’s Learner Support staff carefully review and analyse the mix and balance in each classroom to ensure a positive and successful mainstreaming experience. Working with classroom teachers, specialists tailor “pull out” and “push in” strategies for special needs students according to their individual requirements and in keeping with the classroom dynamics. There are also facilities for in-school occupational and speech therapy.
HKA’s teachers strive continually to improve their ability to teach in an inclusive, differentiated classroom. In-house professional development is essential to HKA’s commitment to being a pioneer in this area. On campus, specialists work closely with classroom teachers to ensure that they are fully equipped to nurture students with different learning styles and needs. Teachers in the mainstream classroom benefit from mentoring and other training as they help students with special needs maximise their learning experiences in the classroom. Learner Support staff work closely with their colleagues to plan collaboratively and ensure students are reaching their potential.
- John Shanahan, Director of Learner Support