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29 Aug 2016
Australia Awards Indonesia is taking steps to ensure the English Language Training Assistance (ELTA) program provides a more inclusive classroom for all participants, including people with disabilities.
Ensuring that everybody - including people with a disability - has the same opportunities in every aspect of life to the best of their abilities is integral to Australia Awards Indonesia. The ELTA program helps achieve this by preparing potential candidates for Australia Awards to improve their English language proficiency.
The pilot training session on 25 to 26 August 2016 at IALF Denpasar, Bali, organised by Mimi Institute, introduced ELTA trainers to specific adjustments they can make to accommodate the different needs of people with a disability.
Forty-five people attended the session, including trainers, coordinators and managers who are involved in the ELTA program. On the first day, participants learned basic sign language and Braille to equip them to better communicate with people with disabilities. In a teaching simulation session on the second day, observers gave feedback to ensure trainers adjusted their teaching method.
Tisha Rumbewas, an ELTA master trainer for the past four years, said the session was an eye opener. “It has been an amazing experience, the training proves that I have a lot more to learn outside my comfort zone, and it triggers my creativity to be a universal teacher, adjusting to the students’ needs,” she said.
Meanwhile, for trainer Ni Wayan Mira Susanti, the role playing simulation made the biggest impact. “I had to pretend to be someone whose hands don’t function, or who is deaf or has a visual impairment. It taught me to be aware of the adjustments that I must make in the real class. It gives me an understanding that people with disabilities are independent, they just have specific needs.”
Nine people with disabilities are registered to join the upcoming ELTA program, starting on 19 September 2016 in various cities across Indonesia for three months.
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