David Rose School should be renamed

Dear Editor,

The David Rose School for Handi-capped Children should be renamed David Rose School for Children with Disability and Impairment or Differently Abled

This letter serves to express my disapproval of the name of the above mentioned school. I am a member of the Guyana Defence Force, I have been working at Base Camp Ayanganna for the past four years. I normally do physical training with my unit three days per week, we pass the school mentioned above regularly but every time I look at the school’s signboard the name of the school makes me sad.

I think referring to someone as handicapped is offensive, patronizing, unacceptable, disrespectful, cruel, unfair and inappropriate especially when the person is a child attending school. A majority of the students attending the school are either impaired or disabled.

Think on this is, if a person has a speech disability (the impairment) the person is unable to speak which may have been caused by accident, illness or a medical problem. We communicate by speaking so (the disability) is the limitation of his/her voice. But there are various aids to assist students with speech disability. For example there was a spelling competition aired on television earlier this month for disabled students who excellently used sign language to spell words using their hands. Someone should not be called the h-word because of their disability or impairment.

Every institution has the right to an appropriate name this is why we should not overlook this neglect by placing the appropriate name for the students of the school to be identified with, even if the children doesn’t recognize it. In doing this we show these children that what we call them matters, they matter.

Names have significance that’s why when I see the name ‘David Rose’ I think that he probably was a special person who wouldn’t appreciate the student of a school named in his honour being regarded as handicapped.

Yours faithfully,

Collin Saunders

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