Classroom Inclusion, but Is It Really Working?

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Inclusion of students with special needs in the classroom has been implemented around the world since the nineties. Although no longer a hotly debated issue, the question still remains; is inclusion really working or should we still be concerned? A successful transition into the classroom provides social and educational benefits and sometimes challenges in regards to time, supports and behaviors. Teachers, classmates and the special needs students themselves can bring significant insight to this very important topic. Teachers generally felt the success of inclusion of the disabled student into the classroom depended largely on the ability of the school to provide specialized services and supports to meet the individual student’s unique needs. Unfortunately this didn’t always materialize; many lacked training and thus felt overwhelmed, “sometimes the rest of the class is put at risk while this child is attended to.” (Nicholson, 2012, p.26) According to Nicholson ccurriculum adaptations to meet the needs of the disabled students as well as the general student population; was acknowledged but time allocation and modifications some found extremely challenging. (Nicholson, 2012, p.26) Teachers commonly supported the idea of inclusion, but whether the schools were prepared and supports and resources were in place was of primary concern. Encouragingly, overall teachers identified many benefits of inclusion in the classroom. “He allows me to expand my knowledge and understanding of his issues, concerns, behavior, and needs which I can apply to my whole class to allow for flexibility and range of activity levels.” (Nicholson, 2012, p.26) Teachers felt students gained valuable life experiences learning to ac... ... middle of paper ... ...s to part of the school community and part of the diverse community at large. Works Cited References Keefe, E., Moore, K. (2004, Spring). “Don’t get your briefs in a bunch” What high school students with disabilities have to say about where they receive their services. Issues in Teacher Education, 13(1) 7-18 Litvack, M., Ritchie, K., Shore, B. (2011). High- and average- achieving students’ perceptions of disabilities and of students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms. Exceptional Children, 77(4), 474-487. Nichilson, J., et al. (2012, September). The transition to school of children with developmental disabilities: Views of parents and teachers. Australasian Journal of Early Childhood, 37(3) 22-29.
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