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Evolution of Special Needs

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To begin my research I put myself in the shoes of parents with special needs children. I have two beautiful healthy daughters and to think about being pregnant and expecting to deliver your bundle of joy and when she arrives you find out something is wrong. You can look at her and tell she is different, but you just do not want to accept it. It saddens me to think how any parent would feel in this situation.

In my research about the historical evolution of special education I found most special needs children were sent a way. Doctors would tell the parents of these children there was nothing that could done and the best thing for them would be to institutionalize them. It was not until mid-1970’s this would change. In 1975 as a result of litigation Congress passed Education for All Handicapped Children Act (Public Law 94-142). (Mastropieri & Scruggs, 2004) According to The inclusive classroom strategies for effective instruction and several articles I read there were over one million children with disabilities who were excluded from public schools prior to the law being enacted. This law was amended in 1997 and is now called Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Before this law was passed it prevented many students with special needs from attending public school and the opportunity to learn. This law “guaranteed a free, appropriate public education (FAPA) to each child with a disability in every state and locality across the country.” (Masteropieri & Scruggs, 2004)

It is written by the US Department of Education there are four purposes to this law.

"to assure that all children with disabilities have available to them…a free appropriate public education which emphasizes special education and relat...

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...is on going and will continue to change as challenges arise and need to be meet. I see in my school today changes that have taken place and how we are working together as a team to make it better for both the disabled as well as the abled. “Project Unify” in our school has been a great success and the special needs students as well as the general classroom students are growing in social skills to help them be better adults.

Works Cited

Mastropieri, M. A., & Scruggs, T. E. (2004). The inclusive classroom strategies for effective in struction. (2nd ed., p. 4). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Merrill.

Sailor, W., & Blair, R. (2005). Rethinking inclusion: Schoolwide applications. Children And Youth - For, Education, College And Alumni, 86(7), 6.

U.s. department of education. (2007, July 19). Retrieved from

http://www2.ed.gov/policy/speced/leg/idea/history.html
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