Newsletter October 2021
We have good news: the lockdown is over and on Monday 25 October the deaf students came back to school! They are happy in the classroom again and enjoy learning and interacting with their school friends. They have been very lonely during the lockdown period at home. The youngest have grown a lot and we have already had to buy new uniforms and shoes because they no longer fit! Pupils between the ages of 12 and 18 are eligible for a Pfizer shot in Sri Lanka. This is given in their own place of residence and one of the parents must be present to sign. Some of the oldest students will therefore not come until next week after their first and some their second injection. We can finally test and accept new students again.
In the auditorium, the students received a presentation with all the corona rules that still apply in the form of cheerful cartoons that we received from the Education Dep. received. There were also movies in sign language. We will repeat it soon when all absent students are present again.
On October 27, a new student came, a deaf girl of 16 years. She lived with her parents in The Hague for 3 years, because her mother worked at the Sri Lankan Embassy. They came back a month ago. She went to the Kentalis School for the Deaf in Zoetermeer. She now knows a little bit of Dutch sign language! When her mother asked the Kentalis staff what was the best School for the Deaf in Sri Lanka to send her child, the answer was: “The Deaf School of Tineke de Silva in Moratuwa”. Still nice to hear! This girl has never been to a School for the Deaf in the past because she lived in India, Poland and other countries and she could only be placed in an international school there.
Unfortunately, we see that many Sri Lankan families have been greatly affected by the corona pandemic. During the long lockdowns of the last 2 years, many jobs have been lost due to the closing of factories, hotels and tourist attractions. People who worked in the Middle East came back and couldn’t get a job here. The government helped with food parcels and an occasional amount of money to stay alive. UNICEF wrote that due to the corona crisis, Sri Lanka has become a developing country again.