The Atades-San Martín de Porres Special Education College has been officially inaugurated this Monday after the health situation derived from the pandemic prevented this act from taking place last year. Since the 2020/2021 school year, the center already serves 138 students from 3 to 21 years old and is a benchmark in special education.
The project, whose financing amounts to 7.5 million euros and has been assumed by Atades and its donor companies, makes a new building available to students and their families with the most advanced educational resources and equipment and is aimed at set up as an example at the national level.
Among the new features, the center has gone from the 1,598.65 m2 of buildable area of the previous building to the current 5,449.35 m2. In addition, the school plans to start up new classrooms for 0 to 3 years and even apartments for families who request it. «We want to be pioneers and have special classrooms for children from 0 to 3 years old and for their families since they currently do not have this type of resources. In the same way, we are waiting for a residence to come into operation for those children who currently have a problem having to travel to Zaragoza every day “, explained the manager of Atades, Félix Arrizabalaga.
With the new center, the quality standards of educational projects are improved with innovative equipment that responds to advanced therapies that improve the daily evolution of students. The accesses cater to the users’ reduced and functional mobility needs and, in addition, projects new and better therapeutic resources with a heated indoor pool, a large psychomotor area (gym) and a multisensory classroom.
The school now also has rooms for physiotherapists and speech therapists differentiated for the different stages and needs; and the creation of residential places for schoolchildren is planned, and the necessary and personalized attention is established for each person according to their needs through the appropriate supports. Finally, all the necessary technologies have also been incorporated to enhance their learning and skills through new, more accessible resources.
Students and families claim to continue improving aspects of the new school
The families and students of the center have thanked at all times the collaboration and effort shown by both Atades and the rest of the institutions. For this reason, they have also asked to continue to maintain that support for the future with ideas and suggestions. “Recess now is much bigger and we can enjoy it a lot, but it is true that on days with a lot of rain or cold, we would like to have a curtain to help us cover ourselves. And, in summer, as the trees are still small, we have a lot of heat without shadows. We ask that you make us a suggestion box », claimed one of the centre’s students, Kevin Diáz.
For her part and on behalf of the families, one of the mothers of the school, Mónica Gaya, has asked for “respect” so that each family is “free to decide where to take our children”, since they need to be heard. “There is a current in Europe today that wants to make special education schools disappear. What we think is that true inclusion is that our children are able to function naturally in society. This can only be achieved with specialized education like the one done here, ”he insisted.