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Student Support Services

As a school we offer a range of services with the specific aim of supporting the physical, social, emotional and intellectual needs of our students. This handbook is a guide to those services, what they provide and how they operate. It has been written for students, parents, and staff.

Is there a student who is struggling with the English language? Are you confused as to why your child is not performing as well as you would expect? Did you notice that a student is unusually down or not her/himself? Whether a student, parent or member of staff, consult this handbook and contact us for advice and help.

LEARNING SUPPORT (LS)

We believe that learning together in a diverse and inclusive community is beneficial for everyone. We welcome students from diverse backgrounds and celebrate our individual learning needs. Our first learning principle, learning is inclusive, reflects our mission statement and guides our learning support philosophy.

At ISU we are committed to supporting the individual needs of every learner and ensure that all students have equitable access to our curriculum. We also believe that learning is creative and challenging and we provide opportunities for enrichment through all three IB Programmes (PYP-MYP-DP). Through our inclusive community, students are encouraged to become active, compassionate, lifelong learners.

We believe in a multidisciplinary approach to learning support. At ISU our Learning Support Team includes certified and experienced educators with backgrounds in special education, dyslexia, EAL, gifted and talented, sensory integration, and counselling. Our team works in partnership with the students, parents and teachers.

Our team provides support for a managed number of students with mild, moderate and intensive learning needs. Our belief in inclusion is supported by research that shows students with learning needs learn best when they are integrated into the classroom with typically developing peers as much as possible. Through our collaborative approach and with differentiation and accommodations we are often able to support students within the classroom context.

All students with an identified learning need that impacts them in the educational environment qualify for Learning Support and receive an Individual Education Plan (IEP), which indicates the support they need to be successful. Identified learning needs may be provided by a previous school, and/or an Educational Psychologist report.

Students that have more intensive needs may qualify for a 1:1 Learning Support Assistant, which is an additional financial responsibility to the family. Their academic program could be modified in both curriculum and/or alternative classes. Functional Skills is a focus point once as student with intensive needs reaches Grade 6 and includes focus areas such as tailoring, culinary arts, horticulture, functional communication, life skills and job training.

Additional supports may include:

  • Small group or one-on-one instruction
  • Modifications within the curriculum
  • Co-teaching models
  • Learning Support Assistants
  • EAL support
  • Functional Skills classes
  • Social/emotional support
  • Speech and Language Therapy (as consult at extra cost)

We believe inclusive learning is beneficial for all, and strive to share the benefit of learning diversity within our school community. ISU is a member of Next Frontier Inclusion (NFI), which supports research and professional development for inclusion across international schools.

Please refer to the Inclusive Learning Handbook for more information about our learning support services.

For more information please contact:

Ann White, JS Learning Support Coordinator - awhite@isumail.ac.ug

Kathleen Sheridan Mwanga, SS Learning Support Coordinator - ksheridan@isumail.ac.ug

COUNSELLING

There are two school counsellors at ISU who work as a team to meet the social and emotional needs of students across both the Junior and Senior School. The counsellors work with individuals, groups, as well as at the grade and school level. Additionally, there is a College Counsellor in the Senior School.

The Junior and Senior School Counsellors advocate for students' needs and to help students advocate for themselves. They are also available to offer family support for parents and other members of the school's community. The counsellors support students on the socio-emotional level, as well as help them achieve their academic potential, working on organization, motivation and study skills.

The Senior School Counselor teaches regular classes, called Life Skills, that cover topics which include: peer relationships, self awareness, resilience, and personal well-being in general. The Junior School Counsellor works with students as individuals and in groups to discuss personal and social issues using a variety of therapeutic activities. In addition, the Junior School Counsellor visits classes to discuss tolerance, inclusion, friendship, transitions, as well as awareness of personal safety.

Students can voluntarily visit the school counsellors, or they can be referred by teachers or parents. Usually the content of the meetings is confidential, unless it is agreed that other people need to be involved or if someone is in harms way. Confidentiality is also relinquished in the case of lack of compliance with the school rules.

The aim of counselling sessions is to enable the student to work through and cope with issues, and to find solutions. If the issue is ongoing or severe the student would be referred to a mental health specialist, either in Uganda or abroad, as needed.

The Junior and Senior School Counsellors are responsible for the general emotional and social well-being of our students. They meet with all new students, to get to know them, help them through the transitional phase, and become aware of their individual needs.

Please refer to the Counseling Handbook for more information about our counseling services.

Please click here for the Child Protection Policy

For more information please contact:

Hannah Gray, Junior School Counsellor - hgray@isumail.ac.ug
Francesca Ferrari, Senior School Counsellor -fferrari@isumail.ac.ug

CLINIC

The Nurse team at ISU supports the physical and emotional health and well-being of the staff and students of the International School of Uganda. The ISU school clinic is a first aid clinic, after emergency treatment referrals are carried out as needed. Our main duties at the school’s clinic are the provision of preventative health care, curative service such as first aid and emergency treatment as well as health promotion activities such as health education. There are always one/two nurses on duty during normal school hours. In addition, we attend to out of hours events such as Family Day and sports events as requested. We keep accurate written records of all visits to the health clinic and maintain student health records.

Our four main responsibilities:

1. Prevention and care for health problems experienced by staff and students.

2. Promotion of the health and well-being of staff and students.

3. Ensuring that the food and drink provided on campus meets stringent standards of quality, safety and hygiene.

4. Ensuring that appropriate medical supplies and first aid equipment and facilities are available on campus.

ENGLISH AS AN ADDITIONAL LANGUAGE (EAL)

The EAL program is designed to give additional English language support to newly enrolled students with limited English proficiency. EAL helps those students function successfully in school life as quickly as possible. Typically students are in EAL support for 1-2 years.


Please help us to meet the different needs of our student population by being aware of what is on offer and by bringing to our attention any students who could benefit from the services we provide. We are here to help!

For more information please contact:

Roos Burmanje, EAL Senior School Teacher - rburmanje@isumail.ac.ug

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