Just a brief outline of what LATCH ON is about. Firstly it is an adult literacy course devised in Australia. It is a Queensland University project and has been running there since 1998. The course was offered to Ireland this year and this is a first outside of Australia.The licence was purchased by DOWN SYNDROME IRELAND and teachers were specifically trained by the AUSTRALIAN PROFESSIONALS who were flown to Dublin in the spring of this year to provide this training. All teachers working with Latch on need a primary or post primary teaching degree.
The course is carefully monitored by Queensland Uni requiring an assessment initially, after the first year and on completion of the two year course. There is a ratio of 1 teacher to 12 students and also a tutor per 6 students. In Limerick we have at present 8 students with 1 teacher and 2 tutors which is a very favourable ratio. Our teacher, Shirley, is a primary school teacher, and we have achieved a balance of 1 male and 1 female tutor. It is a very expensive course to run. In Limerick we are fortunate to have our own premises which is a huge plus. We are really happy with the staff and D.S.L is subsidising this course very generously to the tune of 75%of the cost. This year the Tour De Munster collection is funding our Latch On.
--LATCH ON Blog coming soon--