Inclusive education for children with disabilities
For a long time, children with disabilities were educated in separate classes or in separate schools. People got used to the idea that special education meant separate education. But we now know that when inclusive education for children with disabilities are educated together, positive academic and social outcomes occur for all the children involved.
We also know that simply placing children with and without disabilities together does not produce positive outcomes. Inclusive education occurs when there is ongoing advocacy, planning, support and commitment. Inclusive education is based on the simple idea that every child and family is valued equally and deserves the same opportunities and experiences. It’s about building friendships, membership and having opportunities just like everyone else.
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All children learn in different ways. Inclusion is about providing the help children need to learn and participate in meaningful ways. Sometimes, help from friends or teachers works best. Other times, specially designed materials or technology can help. The key is to give only as much help as needed. It is every child’s right to be included. Inclusive education is a child’s right, not a privilege.
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The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act clearly states that all children with disabilities should be educated with non-disabled children their own age and have access to the general education curriculum. Wild Kratts App Teaches Young Children How to Care for Animals In this app, kids are charge of feeding, washing, and playing with baby animals. To Encourage Curiosity “when people are curious about something, they learn more, and better. The Benefits of Gardening With Kids Don’t let the idea overwhelm you. A few containers and soil in a sunny spot will do. The examples and perspective in this article may not represent a worldwide view of the subject. Schools most frequently use the inclusion model for selected students with mild to moderate special needs.
Inclusive education differs from the ‘integration’ or ‘mainstreaming’ model of education, which tended to be concerned principally with disability and special educational needs, and learners changing or becoming ‘ready for’ or deserving of accommodation by the mainstream. By contrast, inclusion is about the child’s right to participate and the school’s duty to accept the child. A premium is placed upon full participation by students with disabilities and upon respect for their social, civil, and educational rights. Feeling included is not limited to physical and cognitive disabilities, but also includes the full range of human diversity with respect to ability, language, culture, gender, age and of other forms of human differences. By contrast, inclusion is about the child’s right to participate and the school’s duty to accept the child returning to the US Supreme Court’s Brown vs. US and other parts of the world.
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Classification of students by disability is standard in educational systems which use diagnostic, educational and psychological testing, among others. Inclusion has two sub-types: the first is sometimes called regular inclusion or partial inclusion, and the other is full inclusion. Inclusive practice is not always inclusive but is a form of integration. For example, students with special needs are educated in regular classes for nearly all of the day, or at least for more than half of the day. Whenever possible, the students receive any additional help or special instruction in the general classroom, and the student is treated like a full member of the class.
In the “full inclusion” setting, the students with special needs are always educated alongside students without special needs, as the first and desired option while maintaining appropriate supports and services. Some educators say this might be more effective for the students with special needs. Much more commonly, local educational agencies have the responsibility to organize services for children with disabilities. They may provide a variety of settings, from special classrooms to mainstreaming to inclusion, and assign, as teachers and administrators often do, students to the system that seems most likely to help the student achieve his or her individual educational goals. Students with disabilities who are not included are typically either mainstreamed or segregated. A mainstreamed student attends some general education classes, typically for less than half the day, and often for less academically rigorous, or if you will, more interesting and career-oriented classes.
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A segregated student attends no classes with non-disabled students with disability a tested category determined before or at school entrance. He or she might attend a special school termed residential schools that only enrolls other students with disabilities, or might be placed in a dedicated, self-contained classroom in a school that also enrolls general education students. Residential schools have been criticized for decades, and the government has been asked repeatedly to keep funds and services in the local districts, including for family support services for parents who may be currently single and raising a child with significant challenges on their own. The new anti-discriminatory climate has provided the basis for much change in policy and statute, nationally and internationally. Inclusion has been enshrined at the same time that segregation and discrimination have been rejected.
The Convention against Discrimination in Education of UNESCO prohibits any discrimination, exclusion or segregation in education. States Parties to ensure an inclusive education system at all levels. The proportion of students with disabilities who are included varies by place and by type of disability, but it is relatively common for students with milder disabilities and less common with certain kinds of severe disabilities. This section possibly contains original research. Although once hailed, usually by its opponents, as a way to increase achievement while decreasing costs, full inclusion does not save money, but is more cost-beneficial and cost-effective. Collaboration between parents or guardians, teachers or para educators, specialists, administration, and outside agencies. Sufficient funding so that schools will be able to develop programs for students based on student need instead of the availability of funding.
Indeed, the students with special needs do receive funds from the federal government, by law originally the Educational for All Handicapped Children Act of 1974 to the present day, Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act, which requires its use in the most integrated setting. Inclusion often involved individuals who otherwise might be at an institution or residential facility. Today, longitudinal studies follow the outcomes of students with disabilities in classrooms, which include college graduations and quality of life outcomes. To be avoided are negative outcomes that include forms of institutionalization. Students in an inclusive classroom are generally placed with their chronological age-mates, regardless of whether the students are working above or below the typical academic level for their age.
Also, to encourage a sense of belonging, emphasis is placed on the value of friendships. Teachers often nurture a relationship between a student with special needs and a same-age student without a special educational need. In this model, the content teacher will deliver the lesson and the special education teacher will assist students individual needs and enforce classroom management as needed. In this model, the teacher with the most experience in the content will deliver the lesson and the other teacher will float or observe. This model is commonly used for data retrieval during IEP observations or Functional Behavior Analysis. In this model, the room is divided into stations in which the students will visit with their small groups.
In this model, one half of the class is taught by the content teacher and one half is taught by the special education teacher. Both groups are being taught the same lesson, just in a smaller group. In this method, the content teacher will teach the lesson to the class, while the special education teacher will teach a small group of students an alternative lesson. Both teachers share the planning, teaching, and supporting equally. This is the traditional method, and often the most successful co-teaching model. In 2005, comprehensive health supports were described in National Goals for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities as universally available, affordable and promoting inclusion, as supporting well-informed, freely chose health care decisions, culturally competent, promoting health promotion, and insuring well trained and respectful health care providers. Inclusion settings allow children with and without disabilities to play and interact every day, even when they are receiving therapeutic services.
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When a child displays fine motor difficulty, his ability to fully participate in common classroom activities, such as cutting, coloring, and zipping a jacket may be hindered. The importance of inclusive, integrated models of service delivery for children with disabilities has been widely researched indicating positive benefits. Educators generally say that some students with special needs are not good candidates for inclusion. Many schools expect a fully included student to be working at or near grade level, but more fundamental requirements exist: First, being included requires that the student is able to attend school. Additionally, some students with special needs are poor candidates for inclusion because of their effect on other students. For example, students with severe behavioral problems, such that they represent a serious physical danger to others, are poor candidates for inclusion, because the school has a duty to provide a safe environment to all students and staff. Finally, some students are not good candidates for inclusion because the normal activities in a general education classroom will prevent them from learning.
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Most students with special needs do not fall into these extreme categories, as most students do attend school, are not violent, do not have severe sensory processing disorders, etc. Bowe says that regular inclusion, but not full inclusion, is a reasonable approach for a significant majority of students with special needs. Some advocates of inclusion promote the adoption of progressive education practices. In the progressive education or inclusive classroom, everyone is exposed to a “rich set of activities”, and each student does what he or she can do, or what he or she wishes to do and learns whatever comes from that experience. Inclusion requires some changes in how teachers teach, as well as changes in how students with and without special needs interact with and relate to one another. Inclusive education practices frequently rely on active learning, authentic assessment practices, applied curriculum, multi-level instructional approaches, and increased attention to diverse student needs and individualization.
Advocates say that even partial non-inclusion is morally unacceptable. Proponents believe that non-inclusion reduces the disabled students’ social importance and that maintaining their social visibility is more important than their academic achievement. A second key argument is that everybody benefits from inclusion. Advocates for inclusion say that the long-term effects of typical students who are included with special needs students at a very young age have a heightened sensitivity to the challenges that others face, increased empathy and compassion, and improved leadership skills, which benefits all of society.
Inclusive education can be beneficial to all students in a class, not just students with special needs. Some research show that inclusion helps students understand the importance of working together, and fosters a sense of tolerance and empathy among the student body. There are many positive effects of inclusions where both the students with special needs along with the other students in the classroom both benefit. Several studies have been done on the effects of inclusion of children with disabilities in general education classrooms. The study determined that children in the integrated sites progressed in social skills development while the segregated children actually regressed. Another study shows the effect on inclusion in grades 2 to 5. The study determined that students with specific learning disabilities made some academic and affective gains at a pace comparable to that of normal achieving students.
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Specific learning disabilities students also showed an improvement in self-esteem and in some cases improved motivation. A third study shows how the support of peers in an inclusive classroom can lead to positive effects for children with autism. The study observed typical inclusion classrooms, ages ranging from 7 years old to 11 years old. The peers were trained on an intervention technique to help their fellow autistic classmates stay on task and focused. Critics of full and partial inclusion include educators, administrators and parents.
Full and partial inclusion approaches neglect to acknowledge the fact that most students with significant special needs require individualized instruction or highly controlled environments. Thus, general education classroom teachers often are teaching a curriculum while the special education teacher is remediating instruction at the same time. Full inclusion may be a way for schools to placate parents and the general public, using the word as a phrase to garner attention for what are in fact illusive efforts to educate students with special needs in the general education environment. At least one study examined the lack of individualized services provided for students with IEPs when placed in an inclusive rather than mainstreamed environment. Some researchers have maintained school districts neglect to prepare general education staff for students with special needs, thus preventing any achievement. Moreover, school districts often expound an inclusive philosophy for political reasons, and do away with any valuable pull-out services, all on behalf of the students who have no so say in the matter. Inclusion is viewed by some as a practice philosophically attractive yet impractical.
Studies have not corroborated the proposed advantages of full or partial inclusion. Moreover, “push in” servicing does not allow students with moderate to severe disabilities individualized instruction in a resource room, from which many show considerable benefit in both learning and emotional development. Parents of disabled students may be cautious about placing their children in an inclusion program because of fears that the children will be ridiculed by other students, or be unable to develop regular life skills in an academic classroom. Some argue that inclusive schools are not a cost-effective response when compared to cheaper or more effective interventions, such as special education. They argue that special education helps “fix” the special needs students by providing individualized and personalized instruction to meet their unique needs.
This is to help students with special needs adjust as quickly as possible to the mainstream of the school and community. As used by UNESCO, inclusion refers to far more than students with special educational needs. AIDS patients, remote populations, and more. In some places, these people are not actively included in education and learning processes. Proponents want to maximize the participation of all learners in the community schools of their choice and to rethink and restructure policies, curricula, cultures and practices in schools and learning environments so that diverse learning needs can be met, whatever the origin or nature of those needs.
Although inclusion is generally associated with elementary and secondary education, it is also applicable in postsecondary education. According to UNESCO, inclusion “is increasingly understood more broadly as a reform that supports and welcomes diversity amongst all learners. The inclusion of age-appropriate students in a general education classroom, alongside those with and without disability is beneficial to both parties involved. With inclusive education, all students are exposed to the same curriculum, they develop their own individual potential, and participate in the same activities at the same time. The Inclusive Classroom Teacher Created Materials, Inc. A summary of strategies utilized in model programs and resource materials. Stainback, Integration of Students with Severe Handicaps in Regular Schools.
Washington, DC: The Council for Exceptional Children. Nevins, Creativity and Collaborative Learning: A Practical Guide to Empowering Students and Teachers. Achieving the Complete School: Strategies for Effective Mainsreaming. On the nature and change of an inclusive elementary school. The quality of IEP objectives associated with placement on integrated versus segregated school sites.
Judgment of the social validity of instructional strategies used in community-based instructional sites. 3: Curriculum for students with severe handicaps. Personnel Preparation in Disability and Community Life: Toward Universal Approaches to Support. Moving forward on school integration: Strategies for involving studennt with severe disabilities in the life of the school. Gaylord-Ross, Integration Strategies for Persons with Handicaps.
How much time should students with severe intellectual disabilities spend in regular education classrooms and elsewhere? Evaluation of a First-Year Inclusion Program:Student Perceptions and Classroom Performance. The regular education initiative debate: Its promises and pitfalls. The regular education initiative as Reagan-Bush education policy: A trickle down theory of the education of the hard-to-teach. A rationale for the merger of special and regular education. Principles and practices for school integration of students with severe disabilities: An overview of the literature. Should students with severe intellectual disabilities be based in regular or in special education classrooms in home schools?
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Special education in the restructured school. Administrative strategies for achieving inclusive schooling. Stainback, Inclusion: A Guide for Educators. Principals and school reform: Barriers to inclusion in three secondary schools. Gartner, School Reform for All Students: An Essay Review of Beyond Separate Education: Quality Education for All. Classroom organization for diversity among students.
Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press. Turning points: The story of high school inclusion in New Hampshire. Equity and excellence: Finding common ground between inclusive education and school reform. Jorgensen, Restructuring High School For All Students. Snow, The Inclusion Papers: Strategies to Make Inclusion Work.
Inclusion as a force for school renewal. Archived from the original on November 1, 2009. Definition of inclusion, accessed October 11, 2007. Understanding Psychology Eighth Edition”, Feldman, Robert S.