Esther Passaris Opens Up on Suffering From Rare Learning Disability

A teacher and students inside a classroom at Kawangware Primary School, Nairobi, on October 5, 2015.
  • Nairobi Woman Representative Esther Passaris on June 29, disclosed some information on her background during a visit to Highway Secondary School two days after the fire outbreak of its four-story dormitory. 

    While signing the school’s visitors book, the Woman Rep asked some of the school’s staff if they offered handwriting lessons adding that she at times finds it challenging to read her own handwriting.

    Passaris later added that she was not taught handwriting because she was born with dyslexia, a learning disorder that involves difficulty reading due to problems identifying speech sounds and learning how they relate to letters and words.

    She further highlighted how French schools offer handwriting classes as a subject. 

    A teacher and students inside a classroom at Kawangware Primary School, Nairobi, on October 5, 2015.
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    “Writing was difficult for me but I see French schools teaching handwriting as a subject. Those children write so cursively it’s unbelievable”

    Passaris also commended Oscar Award-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o on her handwriting from a letter she saw. “I once saw Lupita writing a letter and her handwriting was amazing. Handwriting is almost an art and it should be a subject,” stated Passaris.

    Dyslexia, also known as a reading disability, affects areas of the brain that process language. 

    A charity-run organization, Dyslexia International, indicates that between 5-10% of the population worldwide experience dyslexia. 

    Signs of dyslexia can be difficult to recognize before your child enters school however the condition often becomes apparent as a child starts learning to read. The common broader characteristics of dyslexia include memory difficulties, organizational difficulties, writing difficulties, reading difficulties, and time management difficulties.

    Mayo Clinic, a nonprofit organization, recommends adults with dyslexia seek evaluation and instructional help with reading and writing. They also advise asking about additional training and reasonable accommodations from your employer/ academic institution.

    Passaris was accompanied by a team to address the secondary students’ needs following the suspected case of arson that occurred on Sunday, June 27. 

    The team delivered mattresses and pillows offered by the National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF), a semi-autonomous government agency under the Ministry of Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs in the State Department of Gender Affairs.

    Police officers at Highway Secondary School after fire broke out
    Police officers at Highway Secondary School after fire broke out.
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  • Source: KENYAGIST.COM