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Holy Family School for special education in Nazareth is one of many centers around the world that belong to Don Guanella Congregation in Italy. These centers provide services to needy people.
The Holy Family School was established in the year 1975 by the late Father Ugo Sansi, following an appeal received from the Municipality of Nazareth and the ministry of Labor and Welfare in Israel.
The building that was chosen belongs to the Franciscan Order.
The School includes the following frames:
1. Chiara Bosatta : It was established in October 1999, in order to provide educational, therapeutic and rehabilitation services to children age 1-3 yrs. who suffer from autism.
2. Kindergarten: to pupils from 3-5 years old
3. School: to pupils from 6-21 years old.
4. Educational and social club to the pupils of the center. It works in the afternoons.
5. Study days that deal with educational, psychological, social and health subjects which are relevant to the educational, therapeutic and rehabilitation staffs, and subjects significant to the parents of the pupils.
The school accepts pupils that have special needs in the following domains:
cognitive, emotional, social and physical.
The general goals of the school:
1. To develop the personality of the pupil in the following domains: the cognitive, emotional, social, behavioral, motor, communicative and sensual, according to his potential, resources and needs.
2. To teach the pupil skills and tools that helps him to take care of his physical and mental health, to cope with life requirements and to integrate constructively in the community in the future, independently as much as possible.
The required elements needed to implement the goals:
1. Creating family atmosphere in the school by providing warmness, love, cooperation, support and pleasure.
2. Providing different educational, teaching and rehabilitation services according to the needs of every pupil as follows :
o Educational-teaching services given by the educator according to a special program which fits the abilities of every pupil. The special program is formulated by a team work of all the staff that works in the school and provides therapeutic, rehabilitation, psychological and social services.
o Psychological services which include writing psychological evaluation, counseling, guidance, and chosen lectures relevant to the educational staff and the parents.
o Social services which include absorption of new pupils, work with the educational staff and the parents, communicating the different institutes that provide services to the pupils and their families.
o Health services given by nurse, pediatrician and neurologist.
3. Providing therapeutic services according to the needs of the pupils:
o Physical therapy: its goal is to develop the motor and functional skills and protecting them and the breathing system. The therapists acquired new methods of treatment that fit the needs of the pupils.
o Occupational therapy: is a functional therapy geared at teaching motor, sensual, perceptual and rehabilitation abilities and skills that help the pupils to satisfy their every day needs independently as much as possible.
o Communication disorders geared at developing and accommodating the different communicational skills : talking, sings, body movements, pictures and communicative means. The treatment fits every pupil according to his ability and special needs. In addition to that, the goal of the treatment is to develop eating skills that depend on the function of the mouth so they will be done independently.
o Hydrotherapy : It is one of the physiotherapy methods and its goal is to realize different treatment aims. Warm water causes muscle's to relax which will improve their function by ensuring maximum healthy movements of the different joints and strengthening them.
o Musical therapy : Its goal is to develop the following domains: the emotional, social, linguistic, motor and creativity. In addition its goal is to improve the self image of the pupil and to develop his cognitive and concrete skills.
4)Letting the pupils take an active part in different educational activities
such as :
o Snoezelen : Snoezelen rooms provide attractive stimulation to the five senses in order to develop and strengthen them. The rooms create comfortable and pleasurable atmosphere and strengthens the relations between the educators and the pupils.
o Library : The library includes educational and psychological books and stories which fit the needs of the pupils and the educational staff. "Reading a Story" project is carried in the library in order to encourage the pupils to take stories home and read them with their parents.
o Computer : The computer is a special teaching and therapeutic means. Its characteristics make it possible to adjust it to the pupil in terms of the software and the hardware, which will enable the pupil to work independently with their own computers or tablets, in the class or at home.
o Arts : Arts activities develop self-confidence and facilitate self expression which develops the pupil's motor, concentration and creativity, and teach him relevant basic concepts.
o Therapeutic gardening : Therapeutic gardening has several advantages. Taking care of plants develops the following domains in the pupils : the cognitive, emotional, social and physical.
o Rehabilitation, motor and sports' activities.
5. Providing guidance, counseling and support to the pupils' families, in order to involve them in achieving the goals of the center.
The long term goals of the school are to continue in exerting efforts to promote the pupils' development: educationally and therapeutically and to rehabilitate his abilities.
The center employs highly qualified people in education, medicine and the medical field, in social work, psychology, management and organization. As well as maintenance and cleaning workers.