About us

ABOUT THE COMPANY

Special Compass is an educational service centred for students with Learning Disabilities and special needs.

Habitually, the term “Learning Disability” has a negative connotation that stereotypes and isolates; individuals are left to deal with their conditions in silence. Often misunderstood, those diagnosed, frequently bear the stigma of being thought of as “slow,” lazy, or “weird.” At Special Compass, we advocate for the unique abilities and skills of those individuals with a Learning Disability.

We believe that your mind is the most powerful tool you possess. If you can think it, you can achieve it. Our goal at Special Compass is to equip students, individuals, educators and parents with the tools to empower themselves so that they are not limited by a model of learning that is not inclusive of students’ unique needs. With the right tools and teaching guides, a student with a Learning Disability can have limitless possibilities for their success. 

Our model is that no student should be left behind. We’re here to help, to guide, to advise, and connect.

Special Compass is a proud ambassador for National Diversity and Inclusion Day. 

 

ABOUT THE FOUNDER – SHAKIRA ROUSE

My goal at special compass is to put a face to Learning Disabilities. I, like many of the students that we work with, went through a period of time where school made me anxious, nervous, frustrated and fearful. I could not grasp many of the concepts that other students seemed to pick up quickly – but, I had no clue as to why. What’s wrong with me? Why is everyone else so smart and I seem to be so stupid? These were the questions that floated through my mind day in and day out. Turning inwards, I began to judge myself. Weighing on my spirits, I sunk deeper into a feeling of hopelessness and eventually found it difficult to connect with others. 

While each experience is unique, the feelings that I went through are quite common for those of us who have Learning Disabilities. My goal is to create a program that can intercept the point at which students feel isolated and alone and create a network of resources that can help guide them to success.

In 2011, I graduated university with a BA in Hispanic Studies. Happy yet not satisfied, in 2013 I went back to school to finish my French degree and start a minor in Inclusive Education. Through my studies in Inclusive Education, I was finally able to put the missing pieces of the puzzle together in my life. After taking a course entitled, Learning Disabilities, I finally had a deeper understanding of what it is, why I experienced such a hard time in school, and most importantly how it affected the way I comprehended information. 

Now I am on a mission to make a difference in the education of those with learning challenges; to help ensure that no student has to relive the frustrations that I faced. It is my goal to help make learning fun not challenging.

 

PHOTOS: Black Canadian Awards

Shakira Rouse - Black Canadian Awards

Shakira Rouse - Black Canadian Awards

Shakira Rouse - Role Model Award Winner

Shakira Rouse - Role Model Award Winner

 

MEDIA:

What Rule Do You Live By - Interview

 

Dr. Denise & Learning Disabilities Part 1, with Shakira Rouse

Dr. Denise & Learning Disabilities Part 2, with Shakira Rouse