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Inclusion In The Classroom Essay Research Paper

Inclusion In The Classroom Essay, Research Paper Inclusion in Class Inclusion ?mainstreams? physically, mentally, and multiply disabled children into regular classrooms. Back in the sixties and the seventies, disabled children were excluded all together from regular classrooms. Currently, the federal inclusion law, I.D.E.A. (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), addresses children whose handicaps range from autistic and very severe to mild (I.D.E.A.

Inclusion In The Classroom Essay, Research Paper

Inclusion in Class

Inclusion ?mainstreams? physically, mentally, and multiply disabled children into regular classrooms. Back in the sixties and the seventies, disabled children were excluded all together from regular classrooms. Currently, the federal inclusion law, I.D.E.A. (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), addresses children whose handicaps range from autistic and very severe to mild (I.D.E.A. Law Page). From state to state the laws of inclusion vary. The laws may permit the special needs children to be in regular classrooms all day and for all subjects or for just one or two subjects (Vann 31). Other times the state laws allow those with special needs to have aids with them to help them in the regular classrooms (Sornson). There are many more variations. The creators of inclusion had the right idea in mind, but it is misused by many administrators and teachers because they aren?t focused enough on what the children really need. I believe that inclusion is not beneficial to normal children or special need students because of the difficult learning environment it creates.

My oppositions leads a strong argument; every child should be able to experience a regular classroom in order to mature and socialize with other children in normal situations (Stussman 18). This is true; children need to be around other children in order to learn how to interact. In stating that, inclusion is one way to let children ?mingle? and socially grow into adults who can communicate with the rest of the world. In March of 1997, ?The Educational Digest? composed an article on Barak Stussman. She has mild cerebral palsy. She shared with the readers her story of how inclusion worked in her life. Barak retold how she felt deep sadness when she realized she was not ?regular?. This made her hate going to school (Stussman 19). Two important statements were made by Barak: ?If children do not perceive barriers, they will amaze you with what they are capable of doing,? and ?I believe public school systems should be a microcosm of the ?real world?? (Stussman 20). My oppositions feels inclusion is beneficial to children because they believe in the concept, ?what you really need to make it in this world is good people skills and common sense; not academic achievement.?

However, the truth is that some children can not be in regular classrooms. Special needs children with medium to severe difficulties can get over looked and not receive an aid to help them in the regular classroom (Francis-Williams 2). The way the state laws are being applied is not effective (Sornson). The utilization of aids and special services has become so selective that most children in need are not receiving adequate attention. It is not that there is a shortage of help. It is that the school systems do not put enough effort into finding the best way to support and educate these disabled children (Sornson).

There are severe consequences that come from not effectively helping special needs children. One is that teachers have to split up their attention between approximately twenty-five ?normal? children and their one or two special needs students. This puts a lot of stress and responsibility on the teacher (Lieberman 62). The teacher may end up slowing down the regular children?s learning because they want to help the handicapped children or s/he may ignore the special needs students and teach only the regular children. Either way, one group could get short changed (Lieberman 63). Although I do believe there are good teachers out there who could balance the responsibilities and actually teach both groups, there seem to be a higher number of teachers who would not put in the effort it would take.

Another consequence derived from the lack of aids per student in the classroom is that the children could truly be in danger (Francis-Williams 10). What if there were a child with epilepsy who were to go into a seizure and hurt themselves or another child in the classroom? It is a very real possibility. If there were not an aid to watch over and help the special needs child, it could be a great risk. There are many other disabilities that can cause harm to special needs students and to those around him/her. Not only is there physical harm that can come about but also mental harm (Francis-Williams 11). These children should not be penalized or made fun of by their schoolmates or other people for something they can not control. The aid is not only there to support, watch over, and protect but also to take the students aside and teach them one on one what they need to know academically (Sornson). This is done at their own speed and allows the child to stay in the regular classroom. The only thing that presents a problem is that this process can not occur if there are no aids to be assigned to the students in need (Sornson).

Inclusion does not enhance the skills of many special needs students because the students never receive an accurate, diagnostic test to assess their abilities and disabilities (Lieberman 59). Currently, once a child is tested, it is extremely difficult and troublesome to change the way s/he is treated because no one wants to take the time to make sure the child is challenged enough or that the child is not in over their head. Right now, under the I.D.E.A. law, children who need more special services (and their parents) go through an excruciatingly long series of hearings and approvals before they can receive more help or be transferred out of the inclusion classroom, into a special education room (I.D.E.A. Law Page). This process is both difficult for the child and confusingly painful for the parents (Sornson). This potentially creates situations in which many parents give up and leave their special needs children in regular classrooms where they are not effectively taught and helped (Sornson).

A learning environment where a child does not want to be can cause the child to become very emotional and distraught. It could also cause them to dislike school more and more as time goes on (Stussman 19). This bad learning environment is harmful the children who dislike the classroom. This negativity can spread and influence other children to dislike school as well; therefore they may not try or function to their potential. The focus of school should be to educate children in a manner and environment which supports and values them as people (Vann 33). The best program is the one which provides a combination of approaches that best suits each individual child (Vann 33).

Inclusion is detrimental to both regular and special needs students because of the complicated and strenuous learning environment it creates. Though there are many variations in the inclusion technique, children are still being helped inadequately and they are not accomplishing the academic achievements that they could. Every child deserves to be in an environment where they will succeed academically and emotionally. Our responsibility is to ultimately create a system that places and supports students and their families in ways that will promote the greatest amount of success.

Works Cited

Francis-Williams, Jessie. Children with Specific Learning Difficulties. New York: Pergamon Press Inc., 1974.

I.D.E.A. Law Page.

*http://www.weac.org/resourse/june 96/speced.htm.* 3 Nov. 1998

Lieberman,Ed.D., Laurence M. Special Educator?s Guide?to Regular Education.

Newtonville, MA: Gloworm Publications, 1986.

Strussman, Barak. ?Inclusion Isn?t All Academic.? The Educational Digest. March

1997: 19-21.

Sornson, Bob. Personal Interview. 25 October. 1998.

Vann, Allan S.. ?Inclusion: How Full?? The Educational Digest. May 1997: 30-33.

Francis-Williams, Jessie. Children with Specific Learning Difficulties. New York: Pergamon Press Inc., 1974.

I.D.E.A. Law Page.

3 Nov. 1998

Lieberman,Ed.D., Laurence M. Special Educator?s Guide?to Regular Education.

Newtonville, MA: Gloworm Publications, 1986.

Strussman, Barak. ?Inclusion Isn?t All Academic.? The Educational Digest. March

1997: 19-21.

Sornson, Bob. Personal Interview. 25 October. 1998.

Vann, Allan S.. ?Inclusion: How Full?? The

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