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Special Education Inclusion

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Special education inclusion signifies the participation of special education students in regular education classrooms and provision of support services to these students. The main objective of inclusion education is that all students in a school, regardless of their strengths and their weaknesses in any area, become part of the school community. Every student develops a feeling of belonging with other students, teachers, and support staff. In segregated special education, children will not learn how to function in a non-disabled world. For instance, children who are disabled in terms of communication and are emotionally distressed would not communicate and might remain in a more emotionally disturbed state in segregated settings. The federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) holds it mandatory for schools to educate children with disabilities in general education classrooms.

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The prime advantage of special education inclusion is that both disabled and non-disabled students are brought together in an environment of togetherness. Children learn to accept individual differences in inclusion education and this would lead to the development of new friendly relationships. Inclusion education also enables active participation of parents in their child’s education. The law also states that students with disabilities have a legal right to attend regular classes and receive an appropriate education in the least restrictive environment. Although the advantages are many, inclusion education creates an uncertainty regarding the roles and responsibilities of regular classroom teachers and special education teachers. However, researches show that inclusion education can be made effective by a healthy collaboration of special education teachers and regular teachers. With the assistance of services that would be available from the health department, physical education department, occupational therapists, speech therapists, etc., the school administration can aid the teachers to develop active lesson plans for inclusion education. Thus schools can create a cooperative learning environment and promote socialization.

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