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Plans have been completed by the
Victorian Department of Mental Hygiene for the special training of sub-uornial and abnormal children.
This was disclosed yesterday by the Chief Secretary (Mr. Balley) when he pointed out that there were already in operation in Victoria many of the "re- forms" which Dr. Anita Muhl, an Ameri- can educationist, had suggested were necessary when she addressed the annual conference of the Victorian Teachers' Union.
Mr. Balley said that a special class, with special teachers, had been established at Travancore school at Flemington, and other classes would be established shortly at the Pleasant Creek school at Stawell and the Janefield Mental Hospital.
All schools would have been in opera- tion already but for the difficulty of ob- taining suitable teachers, Mr. Balley said. Education Department teachers had been employed formerly at Travancore, but they had been replaced by others specially
trained for the work.
Qualifications required of teachers in the special schools included training in the developmental method of kindergarten and other teaching, a knowledge of child psychology, and training in the medical and nursing aspects of mental deficiency.
Dr. P. M. Bachelard, psychologist at the Travancore school, is superintendent of the new school, and has charge of I the instruction of the teachers who will
be sent eventually to Pleasant Creek and
Mr. Bailey said that the employment of special teachers would overcome the diffi- culty caused by the long vacation taken by Education Department teachers. The holidays of the special schools would be short, because one of the essential features of the training was continuity.