EOC Launches New E-learning Programme for Teachers
A new web based training programme "Equal Opportunities Begin at School" was launched today (2 June 2004), by the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) for all teachers in Hong Kong. The e-learning training programme, jointly developed by the EOC and the Education and Manpower Bureau (EMB), is designed to assist educators to accommodate students with special educational needs in schools and also aims to familiarize teachers with the Disability Discrimination Ordinance (DDO) and the impact the law has on the educational environment. Through a tried and tested interactive process using video, audio, graphics and text, teachers are able to develop policies and appropriate practices that allow equal access to education for all students.
In her welcoming remarks at the launching ceremony, EOC Chairperson Mrs. Patricia CHU, explained the need for the programme. "Increasingly students with disabilities are enrolled in regular schools. Since the implementation of the Code of Practice on Education under the DDO in 2001, the EOC has seen the need for a training course tailor-made for teachers, on the implications and applications of the ordinance in education. This joint effort of the EMB and the EOC addresses the need for teachers to provide assistance for students with special needs."
"Catering for individual differences, in particular students with special educational needs, is a challenge to teachers. It requires effective planning, flexibility, commitment, and empathy of the teacher. It requires a student-centred approach that starts with getting to know the student and his/her needs, and puts student learning and the interests of students as the foremost consideration in whatever we do," added Betty IP, Principal Assistant Secretary (School Administration & Support) of EMB.
"Today's new e-learning programme provides for a fairer access for all children in our education system, especially those with special needs. Experience shows that schools which admit students with a disability have gained positive results. Schoolmates who do not have a disability have learned to show greater acceptance and concern for others. Even teachers and principals have benefited. They have developed a sense of competence in dealing with students with special learning needs. Although we are all born different, everyone of us should be able to develop our full potential. The key is, effective education for all," said Mrs. CHU.
Mrs. Patricia CHU expressed her thanks to schools and NGOs which provided invaluable input to the content and design of the e-programme. They include CCC Kei Faat Primary School, Hennessy Road Government Primary AM School, Hong Kong School For The Deaf, Rehabilitation Alliance Hong Kong, Support Group on Integrated Education and Hong Kong Association for Specific Learning Disabilities. Mrs. Chu also extended thanks to teachers and students who took part in the production of the programme. Special thanks were given to Hong Kong Education City Limited for hosting the on-line programme.
The learning package "Equal Opportunities Begin at School" (http://equaled.hkedcity.net) is self paced and contains 3 modules:
Module 1: Explains the background to the law and the principles that underpin equal opportunity
Module 2: Explains the Disability Discrimination Ordinance (DDO) in a straight forward way
Module 3: Provides guidance on how to apply the law in a practical way within the classroom
Teachers who have successfully completed the three modules will be awarded 4 CPD (Continuing Professional Development) hours. Educators will also be able to communicate and discuss successful strategies in integrating students with disabilities into the classroom in the "Open Forum", a special feature of the programme.
Enquiry: Mr. Sam HO 21062187