SIBU: The mother of 13-year-old dyslexic Joshua Lau (pic) is pleading with the authority
concerned to let her son study at SMK Rosli Dhoby which has a class for deaf and dumb students.
Welfare, Women and Family Development Minister Datuk Fatimah Abdullah on Tuesday said the state Education Department had decided that Joshua would continue his studies at SMK Lanang.
Fatimah said the school’s special education teacher, Lela Punggut, specialised in managing children with learning disability (LD), hence should be able to teach Joshua.
The boy’s mother, Magdalene Wong, however, said yesterday that SMK Lanang was not suitable for her son because the special education class there was only for those with serious LD.
“My son doesn’t have serious LD. His main problem now is with his hearing. He has improved tremendously from his LD problem,” she said.
Fatimah on Tuesday also wanted the boy to be sent for further diagnosis by Dr Toh Teck Hock, a paediatrician at Sibu Hospital, to determine Joshua’s disability, before sending him to the appropriate school.
The diagnosis was done yesterday at the Agape Centre by paediatrician Dr Lai.
According to Magdalene, Joshua, once diagnosed with LD and autism during his primary school days, has improved on his mental aspect.
“The last assessment done on him was in 2008 by Agape Centre and his condition then as compared to now was totally different.
“He is aware of his surrounding now. The only thing is his hearing problem which is making him act as if he is abnormal.
“As his mother, I know what is going on and what is best for him,” she said.
Magdalene further said she had told SMK Rosli Dhoby’s principal of the matter and that should the boy be ill-disciplined while in school, they could always call her to calm him down. She said she was confident Joshua would fit in nicely at SMK Rosli Dhoby as there was another student, five years his senior, who could inspire Joshua to progress.
Besides, the home tuition that Joshua was receiving would help greatly in his learning. “The home tutor is teaching him sign language and also on speaking. If he is admitted to SMK Rosli Dhoby and if there is any lesson to catch up, his home tutor will help him with those,” Magdalene said.