Ghana: Mrs Trudy Segbefia, Special Education Coordinator in the Akuapem North Municipal Office, recently reiterated the need for special education needs teachers in mainstream schools to support children with Cerebral Palsy (CP).
She said: “We have special schools for all disability groups, but none for children with CP, we have schools for the blind, deaf and those with intellectual impairments.”
Mrs Segbefia was speaking at a CP parents’ support group meeting, in Accra.
Many of the parents of children with CP said that even though their children are intelligent, they are not able to send them to school because of the lack of support for them in mainstream educational facilities.
Mrs Segbefia said the best way to help educate children with CP is to open the space into mainstream schools while offering special education needs teachers to support them in class.
She explained that children with CP, especially those with severe impairment could hugely benefit from these measures.
She went on to call for adequate medical and educational assessments to see whether they would benefit more from a mainstream or a special school.
A Ghanaian parent of a child with CP resident in the United Kingdom shared some experiences online. He explained how children in the UK normally start nursery at the age of three and how those with special needs have to go through mainstream school:
“In the UK it is only when your special needs child cannot cope with mainstream education that an assessment is made to know whether they qualify for a special needs school.”
He went to explain how special education in the UK is a more comfortable option for parents with special needs, since children in the special needs school get all the required services for free.