Disabled kids get special visit

The wife of the Lord Mayor of the City of London, Lesley Stuttard, visited a school for children with disabilities in Hanoi on May 3 as part of a charity drive.

In Sao Mai (Morning Star) School, the Lady Mayoress of London, along with the wife of London’s sheriff, joined more than 1,000 mentally disabled children from 18 months to 16 years. There, she doled out specially-designed toys that promote learning.

”I am impressed by what I see, particularly the number of staff in comparison to the number of children and dedication of those staff,” she said. “The idea of early intervention by their parents in crucially important.”

The tour was part of the Lord Mayor Appeal, an initiative that sees the head of England’s biggest city support charities.

During her visit to Vietnam, Stuttard’s schedule was filled with activities related to education for disabled children, including visits to the Special Education Faculty of Teachers’ Training College at the National University in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City’s Research and Education Centre for Disabled Children.

Stuttard said she hoped the number of special education schools would increase.

Not many Vietnamese children with disabilities go to school. In Hanoi, o­nly 30% of disabled children attend classes, according to Do Thuy Lan, director of Sao Mai School and member of a national association for disabled children.