Minutes of the Annual General Meeting
Held on Wednesday 27th September 2006 at Centre Prince Henri, Walferdange
Raymond Claes, Chairman of Dyspel, opened the meeting by welcoming everybody present. He then proceeded with the agenda for the evening.
Apologies were received from Amina Kafai, Idalina de Bock, and Jari Pekki.
Minutes of the last meeting
As there were no questions or amendments with regard to the minutes of last year’s AGM, the Chairman declared the minutes accepted.
The chairman promised to keep his report short as two speakers had been invited to give interesting talks after the formalities of the AGM.
He was delighted with the work of the committee over the past year and in particular with the organisation of the first International Symposium organised by Dyspel in February. Funds raised enabled free entrance by parents and teachers to over 20 workshops during the weekend. The workshops were given free of charge by members of the DYPATEC group with which Dyspel has been working closely over the past few years.
DYPATEC is an EC funded project that is currently working on a ‘guide for parents’ in relation to Dyslexia in English, German, French, Polish, Czech, Maltese and Turkish. Other languages – such as Luxembourgish – will be added later. DYPATEC information will also be available online on a sub-website of Dyspel’s new website. Our new website promises to be an exciting resource in the near future. The Dyspel ‘drop-in’ centre in Ave Victor Hugo, with its extensive library, remains Dyspel’s hub of administration and first point of contact for enquiries.
Looking towards the future, in the short term Dyspel has promised to work closely with a new Dyslexia organisation which will start in Bascharage. In June 2007, Dyspel will organise its 2nd International Symposium, again with workshops by DYPATEC specialists and the support of our patron the Grande Duchesse, the European Commissioner for Education and the Minister of Education from Luxembourg. Beyond this working year, Dyspel will help the EDA (European Dyslexia Association) to organise their ‘All European Conference on Dyslexia’ in Luxembourg in November 2007.
The Chairman concluded by looking forward to yet another busy and successful Dyspel year.
Due to the resignation of last year’s treasurer, the Chairman proceeded to report on the financial activities of Dyspel. After a loss of over €10,000 in the previous working year, Dyspel achieved a positive balance of nearly €9000 this year. The main difference in funds was the sponsorship we received for our symposium and the subvention by the European Commission for the DYPATEC project. The chairman then proudly announced the continued financial support from our main sponsor, Fidelity Investments in Luxembourg, in the order of €16,000 to €20,000, which Dyspel can expect to receive before the end of December.
The meeting continued with the important business of electing the new committee. The vice- chair, Diana Dalrymple, reported that three members of the committee had decided to step down. Pam Lyon - treasurer, Karen Crussell – membership and Tania Welch – library, had all done a wonderful job during the last year, and their hard work and dedication to Dyspel would be missed. Dyspel wished them the very best with their new careers and activities. Three new nominations were accepted from the audience, and then the current committee and new nominations were proposed, seconded and elected to serve Dyspel for the coming year.
The following members were appointed:
- Raymond Claes Chairman
- Diana Dalrymple Vice-Chair & Secretary
- Idalina de Bock Treasurer (appointed during the summer)
- Mortimer Freed Member (new)
- Amina Kafai Member
- Genevieve Kirsch Member
- Lisa Miller Member
- Louise McDowell Member
- Jari Pekki Member (appointed during the summer)
- Lynn Polak Member (new)
- Joelyne Reddy-Evans Member (new)
- Tilly Weber Member
- Marc Welter Member
- Eileen Wiley Member
- Alison Wilson Member
A warm welcome was extended to the five new members knowing that Dyspel is entirely dependant on the energy and enthusiasm of its volunteers.
Any other business
- The question was raised if it would be possible to get an English translation of the main speech (in German) of the symposium in February. The chairman reported that this would be no problem if the request was made to him by email.
On behalf of Dyspel, Raymond Claes declared the meeting closed and invited Chuck York and Hubert Marx to present their talks.
Chuck York proceeded with a very interesting explanation of the laws and regulations in the United States in relation to disabilities which includes learning disabilities. The fact that the first law was initiated in 1973 highlighted the differences between the US and Luxembourg. Hubert Marx continued to explain the new pilot project which he is running with the city of Luxembourg to introduce ‘consultants’ to Luxembourg primary schools. These ‘consultants’ will be specially trained teachers within a school and they will be responsible to identify and set-up a course of action for the child in conjunction with the parents, teachers and other organisations. It is hoped that this project will be expanded to all Luxembourg primary school and included within the new education law.
The successful meeting finished at 10pm.