Atfaluna School has been offering academic educational services for deaf children in the Gaza Strip since the year 1992. Schooling for deaf children starts at kindergarten level and continues onto primary and middle school. The educational process in the school depends on a dual language system which includes speech and Palestinian Sign Language.
The academic curriculum introduced to the students consists of two main factors: (1) hearing loss rehabilitation subjects including auditory training and auditory speech training and (2) educational subjects including Arabic and English language, mathematics, geography, computer and information technology, civic education, and science. Additionally the students are introduced to non-curriculum subjects including arts, crafts, and drama.
To ensure the best possible educational environment is available for the students in class the number of students in each group is limited to 12 students at most allowing teacher and student to have close one to one communication. Each classroom is furnished with a large mirror and other visual tools to assist children with residual hearing practice speech in class.
Aim of the Program: the provision of a comprehensive service for deaf children by means of education to assist in facilitating their integration into the Palestinian society and achieving their rights.
The Atfaluna School thrives to provide high quality services to the deaf children including:
Development of special educational curriculums to accommodate the deaf student’s abilities due to a lack of formal curriculums for the deaf on a national level. The curriculum is comprehensive and informative and specially formulated to suit the deaf student’s needs including Palestinian sign language and speech language exercises.
Provision of non-curriculum activities including library sessions, arts and crafts classes
A healthy and balanced nutritious meal for the deaf children who come from impoverished homes and rarely have a chance to eat any meal at home. The meals they receive assist them in maintaining their concentration in class and energy levels throughout the day.
Social support and counseling for deaf children and their families to resolve issues preventing the integration of deaf children within their families and communities
Resolving behavioral problems in students as a result of their disabilities or their surrounding environment
Provision of financial and in kind donations for needy children enrolled in the school through sponsorship programs and humanitarian assistance
Academic teaching staff: the ASDC school academic teaching team consists of 50 teachers, half of them are deaf graduates of the “deaf teaching assistant training program” additionally the team consists of administrators, educational supervisors, social workers and councilors. The organization makes every effort to develop the teaching skills of its academic team in the school and has therefore, submitted its teaching assistants into a five year training program consisting of communication development and academic sign language.