What is Inclusion?
Inclusion in school requires a shift in the paradigm, instead of getting the child ready for the regular class, the regular class gets ready for the child. It's not a decision of zero or one hundred percent, but what ever balance that can be achieved to maximize meeting all of a child's needs. The regular class is not looked at as how it is, but how it "can be".

Adaptations are made to the materials, the curriculum and/or the expectations of the activities for the individual child, maintaining achievement of all individual and academic goals. The purpose isn't simply social or academic, but to meet all of a child's needs together where ever possible.

Through inclusive education children with disabilities remain on a path that leads to an adult life as a participating member of society. Meeting all their needs together increases their ability to achieve academic and physical growth to their potential, and it enhances their overall quality of life. Inclusive education teaches all children team work and how to interrelate and function together with others of different abilities. They learn to value diversity, see the ability of others to contribute, and it gives children a sense of unity.

Benefits of Inclusion for Students With Disabilities

  1. Friendships

  2. Increased social initiations, relationships and networks

  3. Peer role models for academic, social and behavior skills

  4. Increased achievement of  IEP goals

  5. Greater access to general curriculum

  6. Enhanced skill acquisition and generalization

  7. Increased inclusion in future environments

  8. Greater opportunities for interactions

  9. Higher expectations

  10. Increased school staff collaboration

  11. Increased parent participation

  12. Families are more integrated into community

Benefits of Inclusion for Students Without Disabilities

  1. Meaningful friendships

  2. Increased appreciation and acceptance of individual differences

  3. Increased understanding and acceptance of diversity

  4. Respect for all people

  5. Prepares all students for adult life in an inclusive society

  6. Opportunities to master activities by practicing and teaching others

  7. Greater academic outcomes

  8. All students needs are better met, greater resources for everyone

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