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Running head: LP1 INCLUSION CLASSROOM PAPER

LP1 Inclusion Classroom Paper


Katy DeBroux
ECE: Differing Abilities #83942
September 16, 2014
Instructor: Nancy Lager

LP1 INCLUSION CLASSROOM PAPER

LP1 Inclusion Classroom Paper

The implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, "IDEA


guarantees children with disabilities a free, appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least
restrictive environment (LRE). IDEA was reauthorized in 2004 and its' implementing
regulations were released in August 2006."(Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund).
Consequently, children with disabilities are taught in the typical classroom whenever possible.
Although this has caused some hesitation among parents and educators, research reveals
numerous benefits of inclusion including socialization, compassion and academic improvement
for all students.
Even though inclusion may be challenging for some individuals, segregating children
with disabilities may cause more harm than good. In an article from the Education World
Website, the author discusses how separating a child with a disability will prevent them from
learning in a non-disabled society (Special Education Inclusion). For example, when a child
with a communication disorder is placed along with a similar child, he cannot benefit from the
interaction he would receive from a child with verbal skills.
While some believe general education students will be negatively affected by inclusion,
research shows the opposite. There are many positive aspects of inclusion academically. For
instance, typical students learn about diversity, about various disabilities, and different types of
learning styles. Authors Chandler-Olcott & Kluth (2009), discuss how a study completed by
Kliewer & Biklen in 2001 revels how a nonverbal student with autism helped students develop
ways to interpret visual information by the use of symbols. During the study, typical students
comminicated with a child with autism by using a board that had various symbols and yes or no

LP1 INCLUSION CLASSROOM PAPER

boxes to ask questions. This in turn taught the students how to communicate with a nonverbal
student and demonstrates that everyone communicates in different ways.
In addition, students learn compassion and acceptance. In the book "Success for all
Students in the General Education Classroom," general education students discuss their thoughts
on the inclusive classroom. One student states:
I really like Jessica in my class. Befor [sic] I met her I never really cared about
handycapt [sic] people. Jessi is really nice and I like her alot.[sic] Jessica is almost like a
sister to me. I like to spend my recess playing with her. I never thought a handycapt
[sic] kid would be part of my life but now one and a lot [sic] more are (Lewis, 2006
p.12).
My knowledge of workin in an inclusive classroom has revealed similar experiences.
When a child is exposed to a child with a disability, he learns how to appreciate differences.
Children want to be involved. They want to interact with and be helpful to the child with special
needs. If a child is non-verbal, students will find ways to communicate with them. This shows a
great deal of respect and compassion.
Accordingly, students with disabilities gain self-worth, socialization and academic
benefits from an inclusive classroom. Students gain self-worth because they feel like they are
just like everyone else. That is extremely important to a child with a disability. One author
agrees stating, "Having the opportunity (in a well-supported and apprpriately modified inclusive
classroom) to achieve and interact and succeed and fail like the others can really do a lot for a
child's sense of self-worth" (Schultz, 1998). Furthermore, the more often a child with a disability
is included, the less likely they will miss out on social events being offered. Social gatherings
and parties are a part of many children's school years. When a child with a disability is within

LP1 INCLUSION CLASSROOM PAPER

the general classroom, they will most likely be included in the social events. Also, the more
interaction a disabled child has with his peers, the more likely he will learn to socialize and
develop friendships.
In addition to the social aspects of inclusion, there are academic benefits for the student
with disabilities as well. Generally, the inclusive classroom has more staff support. This allows
the student with disabilities the ability to work with more than one teacher thereby gaining more
instruction time to improve academic skills. Each teacher has their own set of teaching skills to
reach a student. Providing a student with disabilities various methods of teaching offers them a
wide range of ideas to use. As teacher collaborate, they have a greater chance of creating
success for the student with disabilities.
As a result, with the improvement of academic performance and the ability for all
children to learn collectively, it is unnecessary and unfair to segregate students with disabilities
from the general classroom. Additionally, the social and emotional benefits of inclusion far
outweigh the fears of parents and educators. Therefore, the execution of the Individuals with
Disabilities Act is detrimental to the future of both typical and students with disabilities.

LP1 INCLUSION CLASSROOM PAPER

References

Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund. (n.d.). Retrieved September 10, 2014, from
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act: www.dredf.org/idea/index.shtml
Lewis, R. (2006). Teaching Special Students in General Education Classrooms 7e.
Schultz, J. J. (1998). Inclusion Q&A: A Parent's Guide. Retrieved September 11, 2014,
from LD Online: http://www.ldonline.org/
Special Education Inclusion. (n.d.). Retrieved September 10, 2014, from Education
World: http://www.educationworld.com/a_curr/curr320.shtml