Mission: To deliver a transformational cognitive intervention programme to all schools in New Zealand and at no cost.
We have established a pivotal research/development project, in collaboration with University of Auckland’s Centre for Brain Research scientists. It is our goal to promote and mount comparison and control studies to develop the evidence-base for the remediation of specific learning disabilities, as well as neuro imaging and other studies to understand the course and nature of neuroplastic changes associated with the strengthening of cognitive function. It is also the goal of the CBR Fellowships to audit the existing programmes available to our learning support students and advise schools and parents. This research programme will result in a substantive and pivotal intervention delivered to all school-aged and tertiary students in New Zealand this decade. Implementation of this programme will significantly reduce the numbers of children in learning support and place these learning impaired children back into mainstream classrooms. We have initiated a working nucleus of CBR personnel, researchers, neuro radiologists to audit programmes that are presently available on the globe, drive new research and develop a pivotal cognitive intervention programme to be delivered from every school, to every student, at no cost over the coming two years. Just as we embrace minimum hours of PE per day – because we so believe in the benefits of a healthy body – we all too should be embracing the need to rewire and regenerate brain neurons and some children will need 3-4 hours per day to get them to the level playing field of their peers.
Addressing the learning support costs in NZ:
If we were able to intercept and rewire a child’s brain at, say, years 1-2, it would result in significant reduction of funds needed to continue to support these children for the balance of their schooling years. A bulk of these early-detection children will be placed in mainstream teaching. At present, once a learning support child is identified in our schools – typically around Year 2 – they will continue to need learning support until they complete school – 13 years. A huge cost we can intercept!
But far more importantly, we can adjust the self-esteem that is being continually bruised, their lack of self-worth – our learning support children very quickly and wrongly, believe that they are ‘dumb’, ‘stupid’ and will take this low self-perception into the crevices of their adult lives. We have the highest suicide rate in the OECD. 11 persons each week take their lives. Eight of these persons are on average, under the age of 22. These eight New Zealanders have spent their lives in one common arena – education.