This was held in the evening and there was a good turnout of parents. More fathers were sighted, a very good sign indeed – a testimony to the success of the Dads@School Programme which was started in July.
It was a simple evening with 2 key focus – briefing parents on exit pathways, and a hands-on learning segment to guide parents how to carry out simple Self Care lessons at home. The key message for the evening was the need for everyone (parents, teachers and caregivers) to take an active role in instilling good work habits in our students from a very young age, so that there is a greater chance that he / she will be able to adapt and integrate more successfully into society when / she grows up.
A total of 27 new teaching and support staff were introduced to the audience. The school had admitted 20 more students since the last PCN.
It was an enthralled audience who listened attentively as Ms Denise Phua, School Supervisor, shared passionately her experiences with adults with autism and urged parents to take active ownership of working closely with the school to teach the critical skills from an early age.
In line with this direction for active parent engagement, the learning segment was carefully crafted to promote this. A parent survey was carried out earlier to determine the common self care skills that parents were either training or had difficulty with training their children. Parents were then allocated into 5 groups based on the feedback and also the age level of their children.
In separate groups, Vice Principal, Mrs Patricia Cheng, together witht the Track Co-ordinators, Coaches, Autism Therapists and Senior OT took the parents systematically through the strategies to promote the learning of self care skills. There were many hands-on activities that got parents to put on their thinking hats and get into discussion with other parents with similar needs. Parents took the stage when they shared their group's learning.
At the end, parents exchange contact numbers and were given a piece of homework for follow up.
There were light and serious moments throughout, and the majority of parents left that evening, tired but very appreciative of the efforts put in by the school management and staff, for the learning takeaways and for the many friends they had made. We are sure the networking between parents will continue beyond the evening.