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Director of Education talks FASD program coming to Keewatin

monteith - seanDirector of Education, Sean Monteith, is excited about the new FASD program at Keewatin Public School.

Things are all set at Keewatin Public for the new Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder program. The special class, called Transitions North, helps children with FASD learn in a very specific environment.

Director of Education at the Keewatin Patricia District School Board, Sean Monteith, explains what help they'll be getting from Toronto.

"Dr. Koren from Motherisk and his clinical team will be coming to Keewatin Public School to meet with our staff at the start of our school year as well as parents. We're really excited because we're bringing probably the leading researcher in this field in the world to Keewatin. He's been here before working with us in the other two classrooms that began last year in Sioux Lookout and Dryden," he said.

The program in Keewatin will be the third under the KPDSB. Unlike the other two however, this program will be funded by the school board and not a grant from the Ministry of Education. The board is also hoping to partner with FIREFLY.

Monteith explains why they decided to bring in a third program.

"I think it's safe to say that if you live in northwestern Ontario there are children living with FASD and they do not learn the same way as "other children" might. So, dedicating a classroom to their needs is something that is unprecedented. We're doing if because we have the need and a lot of boards around us are asking for our experience to be shared with them," he said.

Monteith said the programs in both Dryden and Sioux Lookout have been a huge success. They'll base the newest program on what they've learned from the previous two, both the good and the bad. For example, this time around the students will already be assessed and diagnosed before they come into the classroom to better prepare the staff and to give them an even better chance of success.

Everything begins this fall.

For more information:
FASD program coming to Keewatin
FASD program big success at Dryden school

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