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South African Journal of Occupational Therapy

On-line version ISSN 2310-3833
Print version ISSN 0038-2337

S. Afr. j. occup. ther. vol.41 n.1 Pretoria  2011




The developmental status of street children in Potchefstroom, South Africa



Annemarie van JaarsveldI; Mia VermaakII; Cornel van RooyenIII

IDip. Occ. UP, M.Occ. UFS. Senior lecturer; Department of Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
IIB.Occ. UFS. Junior Lecturer; Department of Occupational Therapy, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
IIIM. Com. (Mathematical Statistics). Department of Biostatistics, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa





Owing to the high rate of school failure among the street children of the Thakaneng Shelter in Potchefstroom, South Africa, a study was conducted to determine the neuro-motor, sensory-motor, and cognitive-perceptual developmental status of these children. A descriptive study, using the standardised Quick Neurological Screening Test, the Beery-Buktenica Developmental Test of Visual Motor Integration and Motor Co-ordination and the Test of Visual-Perceptual Skills (non-motor) - lower level, was implemented. There were 17 participants in the 6-12 years age group. The findings revealed that sensory-motor and cognitive-perceptual deficits were most dominant, particularly those necessary for school-related tasks and consequently progress at school. The results confirmed the need for an intervention program that would focus on the skills required for school performance.

Key words: Street children, developmental status, school failure, sensory-motor deficits, cognitive-perceptual deficits



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Ms Annemarie van Jaarsveld
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