JIS News
  • Deaf Community to Benefit from Training for the First Time

A pivotal step was taken on Wednesday March 24, 2021 by the Mico University College Child Assessment & Research in Education (CARE) Centre when for the first time in its history, members of the deaf community were given an opportunity to be trained on its Mico Diagnostic Reading Test (MDRT) in an online workshop that was arranged specifically for them.

In making the announcement, Acting Director of the Mico CARE Centre, Mrs. Denise McDonald, said: “For us at the Mico CARE Centre, this development represents a ground breaking achievement and a delivery on a commitment that was made about two years ago to members of the deaf community to look at how we could accommodate them in our training as we seek to promote inclusiveness”

Mrs. McDonald went on to say further that: “The timing of this development is also very significant as it coincides with the launch of the revised edition of the test. This segment of our special needs community has been waiting on this moment and that is why we are pleased to announce that they will enjoy the distinction of being the first group to be trained on the newly released MDRT – 2nd Edition.”

She concluded by saying that with a path now opened for members of the deaf and/or hearing impaired community to access services from the Centre, she now expects to see more requests coming in for facilitation from this group.

Ms. Tashi Widmer Executive Director of the Caribbean Christian Centre for the Deaf (CCCD) who represented the group of educators from her institution who participated in the training said: “We are grateful to the Mico CARE Centre for allowing our members the opportunity to be trained on the MDRT as this will now equip us with the skills and tools necessary to give more targeted assistance to the students at our campuses across the island who are having reading struggles.”

This small group of professionals from the CCCD were of mixed aural ability and were all able to successfully fulfil the MDRT-II training requirements with the support of interpreters.

Concerns were also expressed by the Acting Director about the significant impact that the Corona Virus Pandemic is having on education in Jamaica with so many of our children having not received any form of instruction for a full year. She also said that the learning loss to our children is very significant, as we have been seeing in the sector. She continued by saying that the release of this new measure at this time could play a significant role in helping educators to diagnose where the learning challenges are so that the appropriate interventions can be made to assist our students.

Newly launched, the revised edition of the MDRT- II was normed in a number of Caribbean countries, including Jamaica to reflect the language, culture and experience of children within the Region. It is an instrument that is used to assess the reading competence of children from kindergarten to Grade 10 in high schools and their need for intervention.

The MDRT is the outcome of one of the Centre’s major research efforts and was first published in 1995. It is appropriate for use in a clinical setting by reading specialists, resource room teachers, guidance councillors, diagnosticians and psychologists.

The new Mico Diagnostic Reading Test – Second Edition is available now. For further information, you may contact the Mico Care Centre at 876-929-7720-2 or by email at: care_centre@cwjamaica.com.

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