REACHOUT, UK: Autism Society, Gorlovka, Ukraine

From Despair to Hope

Opening of the School for Autistic Children in Gorlovka

The parents were sure that specialized education and appropriate care could be very beneficial for their autistic children. With all the necessary information, educational programmes and suggestions they went to the Education Department, the body responsible for providing education for all children. However, the parents were too naïve to believe that this Department would be pleased to learn the latest achievements in the field related to their work. Since 1994 this issue has been studied by the Education Department in Gorlovka…

The parents, driven to despair, decided to start a school for their children themselves. On 10 March 1995 they founded the first experimental group (the first class of ‘unteachable children) for four children with autism, aged 6-9, without any permission from the local authorities as they could not wait any longer for their decision. The parents rented a room in one of the schools and started the classes. They have saved a little money each month to employ teachers.

The Barnsley Council’s Public Relations Department put them in touch with the National Autistic Society. On 1 September 1995 the class of the ‘unteachable’ children was named ‘Storm Class’ in honour of the support given by Storm House School for children with autism, England.

 

1st of September 1995 - the happiest day of the four families

 

Our 'unteachable' children go to school!

In November 1995, the parents created another group for three more children, aged 4-7, nonverbal, and a month later – for two more children. (By February 1995, there were 16 children in the school.)

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