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Inclusion in Education. What is inclusion? What effects will inclusion have on the classroom?

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Introduction

Inclusion in Education Fewer subjects in education evoke more discussion, confusion, or apprehension than the topic of inclusion. What is inclusion? What effects will inclusion have on the classroom? Fewer subjects in education evoke more discussion, confusion, or apprehension than the topic of inclusion. What is inclusion? What effects will inclusion have on the classroom? What is the impact on teachers? More importantly, are we as a nation prepared to face the challenge brought about with inclusion? These are only a few of the areas that we will explore as I attempt to unravel the issues surrounding inclusion. The true essences of inclusion is based on the premise that all individuals with disabilities have a right to be included in naturally occurring settings and activities with their neighborhood peers, siblings, and friends. Moreover, supporters of inclusion believe that the heart of inclusion refers to the commitment to educate a child, to the maximum extent appropriate, in the school that the child with the disability attends. It is believed that the child will benefit from being in the classroom with "normal," if you will, students. (Education World, 2000) One of the strongest arguments for inclusion has a philosophical, moral and ethical base. This country was founded upon the ideals of freedom and equality of opportunity. Although the idea of freedom and equality for all have not yet been fully realized, we as a society are constantly struggling to achieve it for all, disabled children included. ...read more.

Middle

Furthermore, the idea that students will embrace and want to become "peer buddies" with special need students is simply an assumption with little if any research to support it. Students are very unpredictable. Teachers, parents and special needs students all have concerns with the emotional impact of inclusion. They are cautious because of the fears of mockery or ridicule by the other students. (ERIC, 1998) Nevertheless, it is believed that teachers who have low-ability students have lower expectation for the entire class. Furthermore, the segregated programs tend to be "watered down" and lack individualized plans. Whereas, special education teachers have higher expectations for the students as well as special curriculum that is appropriate for special need students. The fact is, individualization is more likely to take place in a small setting than in the regular classrooms. In essence, inclusion could delay the educational progress of the whole class. (AFT 1994) Labels within themselves are not negative when properly applied. It is only as we realize a student's educational level, that we can provide services to benefit the student. Special education advocates contend that some educational programming in regular classrooms is totally inappropriate for some special needs students. Therefore, the programs would have to be watered down in order to meet the needs of the special needs child. In this case, the needs of the normal students will be neglected. ...read more.

Conclusion

I believe that the special education system needs to be changed in order to become stronger and meet the challenge of educating those with special needs; but should not be demolished in order to implement inclusion. If a house requires a major renovation, it is not necessary to level every wall. http://www.aft.org//about/resolutions/1994/inclusion.html American Federation of Teachers, AFL�CIO - 555 New Jersey Avenue, NW - Washington, DC 20001 Copyright by the American Federation of Teachers, AFL�CIO. All rights reserved. Photographs and illustrations, as well as text, cannot be used without permission from the AFT. Resolution on Inclusion of Students with Disabilities AFT: About AFT: Resolutions: Inclusion of Students with Disabilities AFT Home > About AFT A Proud Tradition A Diverse Union of Workers An Innovative Union A Commitment to Quality An Issues-Driven Union A Tradition of Social Justice AFT ... http://www.aft.org//about/resolutions/1994/inclusion.html - size 16.2K Inclusion Can Hurt Everyone by AFT President Albert Shanker April 21, 1996 http://www.aft.org/stand/previous/1996/042196.html American Federation of Teachers, AFL�CIO - 555 New Jersey Ave, NW - Washington, DC 20001 Copyright by the American Federation of Teachers, AFL�CIO. All rights reserved. Photographs and illustrations, as well as text, cannot be used without permission from the AFT. AFT: Where We Stand: April 21, 1996: Inclusion Can Hurt Everyone AFT Home > Where We Stand 1999 1998 1997 1996 1995 1994 1993 Inclusion Can Hurt Everyone by AFT President Albert Shanker April 21, 1996 Today's guest columnist is Romy Wyllie, an ... http://www.aft.org/stand/previous/1996/042196.html - size 11.3K ...read more.

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