Sales manager Zoeb Gulam Abbas, 40 was brimming with pride as he and his wife Zarina Shabbir, 38 watched their 14-year-old daughter Zahra dance and perform on stage.

“For weeks leading up to the concert, she would not stop talking about it and practiced at home the dance moves even though her teachers did not tell her to do that,” Zoeb said.

Enrolling Zahra who suffers from global development delay at Taarana school for children with special educational needs seven years ago, was perhaps one of the best decision the couple made.

“The school has a very good system. Earlier this year, the school talked to us and showed the negotiated education plan which is unique for each child in the class. They ask us what goals do we want our child to achieve for example toilet train her, do certain mathematics and what is achievable based on her current status. The school hold mid-term and end of the school review to see how she has progressed,” he said.

“Zara doesn’t know about the goals but she is happily achieving them,” he said with a fond smile.

“Zara is a loving and friendly person, everyone in her class is her friend.  She is also quite manipulative as she knows how to get her ways with family, teachers and friends,” he said with a laugh.

Zoeb said the teachers at Taarana were very understanding of Zara’s needs and used various methods to help her.

“Her diet improved tremendously, she is quite weak when it comes to walking because of her energy issue and the school ensures that she has a safe environment and help her to achieve more,” he said.

“We are so proud of her,” he added.


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