NEWLY OPENED SENSORY ROOMS DESIGNED TO MEET THE NEEDS OF STUDENTS WITH ASD

Basseterre: St. Kitts, Monday, June 10, 2024: On Monday June 10 the Early Childhood Development Unit (ECDU) in collaboration with the Ministry of Education participated in a ribbon-cutting ceremony at four daycare centers, marking the opening of multi-sensory rooms to support the developmental needs of students on the autism spectrum disorder (ADS).

Addressing the rationale for the sensory rooms Minister of Education Hon. Dr. Geoffrey Hanley, explained

“It is with immense pleasure and pride that I address you at the official opening of not one, but four sensory rooms, across our beautiful island. For children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and other developmental delays, the world can be a very over-stimulating, intimidating and overwhelming place. Therefore, sensory rooms will be used to help them self-regulate and develop by exploring a variety of sights, sounds, textures, and movement experiences. Sensory rooms provide a safe and controlled environment where children with ASD can manage their sensory needs, regulate their emotions, and focus on learning, all with the support of their teachers. Our sensory rooms will benefit both the children who utilize them and also become a learning experience for their peers. Over time our society will become more accepting and understanding of persons with special needs

Director of ECDU, Ms. Kimona Browne remarked,

“Sensory rooms are more than just spaces filled with equipment they are environments designed to enhance learning, provide support and promote inclusivity. These rooms will offer our children interactive and multisensory experiences that cater to their diverse needs, helping them develop essential skills in a fun and engaging way. Today as we open these sensory rooms, we are not just cutting ribbons: we are opening doors to new opportunities, experiences, and growth for our children. We are reaffirming our commitment to creating an inclusive and supportive environment where every child can thrive.”

The opening of these rooms at St. Paul’s Daycare Center, Tabernacle Daycare Center, Victoria Road Preschool, and St. Peter’s Daycare Centre, serves as visual representations of the June 2024 Child Month theme “Embrace Inclusion: Every Child Counts” and the Ministry of Education’s guiding theme “Transforming Education Through Self-Renewal, Holistic Partnerships and Digital Solutions.”

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