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School Reopening: Expert advocates mental health counselling for special needs children

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Confusion greets resumption date for students in exit classes in Enugu

Dr Kimberley Scollard, the Head of School at Anthos House, has called for mental health counselling for special needs children as schools reopen across the country. She made this call in a recent interview after the Lagos state government announced that schools can reopen.

“It has been a very difficult time for everyone. We have all gone through what we have never experienced in our lifetime. The six-month schools’ lockdown has taken a mental toll on everyone in the academic environment; so, there is a general need for schools to organize mental health counselling for their students. This counselling would make it easy for them to transit back to school and reduce the anxieties related to returning back to school after the prolonged stay at home,” she remarked.

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According to her, aside from following the COVID-19 preventive guideline issued by the government, Anthos House will prioritize mental health counselling for its students. She said, “We have done the things that the government asked schools to do, such as staff training on COVID-19 prevention and installation of handwashing and hand sanitizer stations. Besides that, our counsellors, psychologists, and emotional therapy teachers will work with our students and their parents to reduce the fear associated with resumption.”

Dr Scollard also declared that because some parents aren’t comfortable with allowing their children to go back to school now, the school provides students with an online or on-site learning option.

Anthos House is an initiative of Greensprings School. It was established in 2018 to provide intensive care, quality education, and therapy for students aged from 10-year-old to +17 with mild to moderate learning needs, as well as children with Autism, Down’s Syndrome and Cerebral Palsy, among others.

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