Country information for Cyprus - Assessment within inclusive education systems

Through the core articles of the law, the state undertakes the early detection of children with special needs from the age of three. In 2018–2019, 4.8% of children aged three years to four years and eight months were formally identified as having additional needs (Source: District Committees of Special Education).

Any person – especially any parent, director of a nursery, kindergarten, primary school or secondary school or any other member of their education staff, doctor, psychologist or social worker – is responsible for informing the District Committee of any child who may have special needs that comes to their attention.

The District Committee has the duty to efficiently evaluate the needs of any child considered to have special needs, wherever that child attends classes or resides. It must provide all the necessary measures in terms of curriculum adaptation, technical and staffing support for the child’s effective education within a mainstream setting. This evaluation is conducted by a multi-disciplinary team, including an educational psychologist, a specialist teacher, a doctor, a speech therapist and any other necessary specialist.

The parents of the child being evaluated have the right to attend the evaluation and to participate alone or with a specialist. After the evaluation, parents are informed of the Committee’s decisions concerning their child. They have the right to appeal to the Central Committee for Special Education.

The District Committee decides whether a child needs special education and training or facilities. It also decides whether special education and training will be provided in a mainstream classroom, in a special unit in a mainstream school or in a special school.

In September 2004, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sport and Youth activated the mechanism for identifying and supporting children with learning difficulties and emotional and other problems. This mechanism facilitates in-school support for children and families before any official special education procedure is carried out. To ensure the appropriate staffing of the various services, the Ministry places a high priority on staff development through various training programmes.

Every two years, or earlier if required, a re-evaluation takes place to assess the learner’s progress, the individual education plan and any further needs.

Last updated 27/03/2018

 

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