Term Paper: Mainstreaming People Who Have Severe

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[. . .] Yet, rationale and benefits of inclusion seem to have been vanished in all the rhetoric of rights and moral imperatives. In addition, anticipated benefits have not been seen in many so-called inclusion programs, because these programs have been so poorly executed. What was it that made so many people so excited about inclusion? Two factors in particular seemed to stand out when discussing the rationale for inclusion.

First, and perhaps the most reason was inclusion promised parents that their child with a disability would be part of a larger group and a true member of a general education class. While friendships could not be forced, opportunities for forming friendships with peers without disabilities became much more practical when children with disabilities where based in general education classes (Brown, et al. 1-7). Simple things such as talking with friends in class, playing together on the playground, chatting over lunch, getting ready to go home, and sharing excitement of assemblies and other school-wide functions seemed to be more difficult to plan when children with disabilities were alienated from peers without disabilities (Ferguson, 281-306).

A second critical reason was the fact that empirical research showed a divide, dual system of special education (mostly self-contained) and general education were relatively unproductive and inefficient. For example, reviews of research by (Wang and Baker 503-521) found integrated settings when implemented properly, were more effective in helping students with disabilities achieve both academically and socially while shunning negative effects e.g., lower self-esteem, less confidence, lack of motivation that often had been associated with segregation. Similarly, graduation rates; post-secondary education, employment, and residential independence were considerably lower for children with disabilities most of whom were in segregated programs compared to children without disabilities. More recently, research has shown that individualized and even exclusive instructional techniques can effectively be carried out within the general education setting. It look that separating children with disabilities for educational purposes, while well intentioned, was not effective or necessary.

Benefits of Inclusion

What of benefits of properly conducted inclusive programs? Were benefits of inclusive programs anticipated by advocates in the 1980s found in the 1990s? Recent research has, in fact, supported benefits of inclusion not only to the child with a disability, but to non-disabled children and to general education staff (Giangreco, Dennis, Cloninger, Edesman, & Schattman, 359-372). However, it is vital to remember these benefits are only available in properly conducted inclusive programs.

Inclusion in education involves the processes of increasing the participation of students in, and reducing their exclusion from, the cultures, curricula and Inclusion involves restructuring the cultures, policies and practices in schools so that they respond to the diversity of students in their locality.

Inclusion is concerned with the learning and participation of all students vulnerable to exclusionary pressures, not only those with impairments or those who are categorized as 'having special educational needs'.

Inclusion is concerned with improving schools for staff as well as for students.

A concern with overcoming barriers to the access and participation of particular students may reveal gaps in the attempts of a school to respond to diversity more generally.

All students have a right to an education in their locality.

Diversity is not viewed as a problem to be overcome, but as a rich resource to support the learning of all.

Inclusion is concerned with fostering mutually sustaining relationships between schools and communities.

Inclusion in education is one aspect of inclusion in society. Inclusive education means disabled and non-disabled children and young people learning together in ordinary pre-school provision, schools, colleges and universities, with suitable networks of support. Inclusion means enabling pupils to participate in the life and work of mainstream institutions to the best of their abilities, anything according to their needs.

Because children whatever their disability or learning difficulty have a part to play in society after school. An early start in mainstream playgroups or nursery schools, followed by education in ordinary schools and colleges, is the best preparation for an incorporated life. Education is part of, not separate from, the rest of children's lives. Disabled children can, and are, being educated in mainstream schools with suitable support. There are many different ways of achieving this.


Approximately 80% of students with learning disabilities obtain the majority of their instruction in the general classroom. Disabled children gain real life experiences when dealing with regular students. They deal with the daily mockery and challenges that only make them stronger against those that may put them down. Dealing with and learning from daily problems now will only help disabled children as they grow up in an unkind world. Fascination in regular curriculum gives disabled children a chance to test their abilities. Disabled children can test their skills and see what areas they excel in. After children find something they excel in, they can use that talent in future objective. Disabled children are given a chance to challenge their minds and thus grow mentally. By doing so, they may increase their learning capabilities and advance in their education. Because children may only be disabled in certain areas of prospectus, immersion will give them a chance to keep up in classes they are mentally able to. By giving disabled children the chances they deserve, their mental and physical abilities are able to pick up and thus improve their education. Even though education in regular schools can be challenging for learning disabled children, including them can enhance their self-esteem, develop their social skills to help them survive in the world, and give them a possibility to be exposed to regular curriculum. Everyone at some point in their lives will be exposed to people with handicaps.

Works Cited

29 U.S.C. 706.

42 U.S.C. 3602.

42 U.S.C. 12211.

42 U.S.C. 12101.

42 U.S.C. 12112.

Brown, L., Long, E., Udvari-Solner, A., Davis, L., VanDeventer, P., Ahlgren, C., Johnson, F., Gruenewald, L., & Jorgensen, J. The home school: Why students with severe intellectual disabilities must attend the schools of their brothers, sisters, friends, and neighbors. The Journal of the Association for Persons with Severe Handicaps, 14, (1989).

Ferguson, D.L. The real challenge of inclusion: Confessions of a 'rabid inclusionist'. Phi Delta Kappan, 77(4), (1995).

Giangreco, M., Dennis, R., Cloninger, C., Edelman, S., & Schattman, R. I've counted Jon: Transformational experiences of teachers educating students with disabilities. Exceptional Children, 59. (1993).

National Health Interview Survey, National Institute on Disabilities and Rehabilitation Research. Visual and hearing impairment data are from the 1983-85 survey; wheelchair datum is from the 1980 survey.

Stainback, W., & Stainback, S. A rationale for integration and restructuring: A synopsis. In J.W. Lloyd, N.N. Singh, & A.C. Repp

Eds.), The regular education initiative: Alternative perspectives on concepts, issues, and models. Sycamore, IL: Sycamore. (1991).

Wang, M.C., &… [END OF PREVIEW]

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