Rotary Area of Focus – Education and Literacy:
The Rotary Clubs of St Augustine and San Fernando South (Trinidad – District 7030) and the Rotary Club of Willowdale (Toronto – District 7070), will partner to support the work of the School of Education at The University of the West Indies, St Augustine Campus, on a School of Education Literacy Project which will constitute Phase IV of the Psycho-educational Diagnostic Intervention Clinic’s (PEDIC) ADHD/Reading project in Trinidad and Tobago. The PEDIC will identify issues related to the needs of learners with Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) and reading challenges over the first two phases, surveying a total of 5,220 students at the Primary School level across the educational districts of Trinidad & Tobago. Then, as an extension to the project in Phase IV- using the resources provided through the Rotary Clubs- PEDIC will administer screening for Dyslexia, Diagnostic Tier I and II reading assessments that identify the specific areas that will drive responsive instruction and intervention, and provide professional development for teachers operating in the general classroom setting and in specialized supplemental settings, in the areas of addressing the needs of learners with ADHD, Dyslexia and other reading challenges.
Dr. Paulson Skerrit, BEd.
Dr. Paulson Skerrit has a BEd. in Primary Education- Special Needs., and obtained a Master of Science in Teacher Education- Education of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing and a Doctor of Philosophy in Education- Literacy Studies upon receipt of two successive First Class Honours Post Graduate Scholarships. Paulson supervised and taught Deaf Education student-teachers during his post-graduate work at the University of Tennessee from 2012 – 2015, and subsequently, in 2016, he lectured at The UTT’s Centre for Educational Programmes as a Senior Instructor in the Special Education Needs specialization. Since 2017, he has continued his work as a teacher educator in the area of Reading Education as a Lecturer at The UWI, St. Augustine. Dr. Skerrit also serves as a reading specialist and has worked with his colleagues to establish the Pscychoeducational Diagnostic and Intervention Clinic (PEDIC) at the School of Education, The UWI, St. Augustine
Dr. Skerrit’s primary research agenda focuses on developing reading competencies for struggling readers with a particular concern for those of low SES status, the gifted, speakers of English-based Creole and a special interest in the Deaf and hard of hearing- a unique population of struggling readers. Paulson is also interested in the use of technology in teaching and learning and teacher leadership in the classroom.
Dr. Skerrit has developed communicative proficiency in American Sign Language (ASL) and Trinidad and Tobago Sign Language (TTSL) and has since been certified by means of Sign Language Proficiency Interviews (SLPIs) as an advanced signer both in Trinidad and Tobago and in the United States.
Dr. Skerrit collaborates with Gallaudet University to provide professional development for teachers of the Deaf in evidenced-based literacy and language teaching methods. He is currently involved in a project to provide specialized reading instruction to young adult Deaf and hard of hearing struggling readers and to develop a shared reading project that targets families of young Deaf children. Dr. Skerrit has been privileged to successfully partner with the Rotary Club on reading initiatives in the St. Augustine area and is keen on further expanded collaboration on projects that will serve the wider community.