Monday, 30 May 2016

On education and schooling

There is no shortage of discussion about how students with disabilities should be educated. Half way through the school year is  good time to assess how things are going, and how they might change:

Less is more: the education assistant - practical tips for teachers no.3
Catia Malaquias and Dr Robert Jackson, Starting with Julius, 27 May 2016
... An education assistant can be an invaluable resource in the classroom to support the teacher to include a student with disability. They can assist the class teacher to provide a great educational experience to all students as well as increase the independence and social connection of the student with disability ...

Inclusion At All Costs?
Linda Graham, 16 May 2016... In his TES (Times Education Supplement) article, Tom (Bennett) criticises something he calls “Inclusion At All Costs” (IAAC). This is not something with which I am familiar, perhaps because it is not a real policy and no one has ever advocated for it. ... I can understand where Tom is coming from and have no doubt his frustration resonates with a great many teachers. But, there are a number of problems with his article, as well as the Secret Teacher piece, that I feel duty bound to point out. These problems revolve around the uncritical use of words like “mainstream”, the way that inclusion is being conceptualised, and the conflation of equity and equality ...
Friends fight school for boy with Down syndrome 
USA Today, 16 May 2016
Brady was going to be moved to a school with a program for students with special needs, even though he was thriving in a class with his friends. His friends petitioned the school system to let him stay in their class. (47 s video)

Jennifer Kurth, Swift Schools, 2015
Despite the positive effects of inclusion, students with extensive and complex support needs are all too often relegated to self-contained, segregated classrooms with little to no access to the general curriculum ... Why does segregation persist, then, in light of the compelling benefits of inclusive education? The answer to this question is elusive, but seems to reflect a general sentiment that a continuum of placements is necessary and appropriate, and that, in fact, some degree of restrictiveness is appropriate for students with disabilities ...

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