Learning Disabilities and Inclusion in the Classroom

EDUC 2500 Contemporary Issues Project
Ashley, Sarah-May, Emily


Our presentation outlines a contemporary issue that we feel is increasingly
important to understand. We outlined some of the basics about learning disabilities:
what they are, what causes them, how to cope with them, how to help a child through
them, etc. We feel that learning disabilities are becoming increasingly more common, as
society is beginning to become enlightened on the fact that learning disabilities don’t
make a child any less than his/her peers. A learning disability just means that a student
will need a little bit more assistance and support to have an equitable chance for
We feel that a child with a learning disability needs the support of his/her
community of teachers, peers, and family in order to feel valuable and intelligent. It
really does “take a village” to raise and support a child. This support is 100% necessary
when putting plans into place for the student to receive accommodation or special
assistance through the implementation of code 54 and the creation of their IPP.
This issue is so important to us all, and as future teachers, we need to be able to
recognize and have a basic knowledge of this increasingly more common issue within
the education system.

Key Points

What are Learning Disabilities
 Special needs students: are defined as students with mild to severe disabilities
and/or students that are talented or gifted.

Disorders of Learning Disabilities
 Students with learning disabilities can be difficult to diagnose and create a plan
for because no two students are exactly alike and there tend to be other factors
that can affect a student’s ability to learn.
 Some learning disabilities can be due to genetic or neurobiological factors or
Key Components of Programming
1. Collaboration
2. Meaningful Parental Involvement
3. Identification and Assessment
4. Ongoing Assessment
5. Individualized Program Plans
6. Transition Planning
7. Self-Advocacy
8. Accommodations
9. Instruction
Codes for Special Education
 A code can be given to a student anytime in their educational career, from ECS
to K-12.
 Provides demographic feedback the government
 The government and school boards follow the “Special Education Coding Criteria
2016/2017” handbook.
 The handbook lays out 18 separate codes that each represent something unique.
-The 18 codes are broken up into 2 parts: mild/moderate including gifted and
talented for ECS and grades K-12, and severe for ECS and grades K-12.
Code 54-Learning Disability
 Code 54 is only found for grades 1-12, because a learning disability does not
generally present itself for diagnosis earlier that grade 1.
 The “Special Education Coding Criteria 2016/2017” states:
-Learning disabilities affect the acquisition, organization, retention,
understanding, or use of verbal or nonverbal information.
-The DSM-5 uses the term “Specific learning disorder” to identify exactly what
kind of learning disability is shown.
-A student must be diagnosed by a professional
 It is essential to support individuals with learning disabilities by having
interventions that are appropriate for the student’s specific needs.

Individualize Program Plan-IPP
 After a code is given to a student, the parents and school personnel need to
create an IPP.
 An IPP is usually create at the beginning of the school year
 An IPP outlines many things, some of which are:
-The specific educational needs of individual learners
-The collaboration between students, parents, teachers and other staff who work
with the students
-Monitoring and evaluation of a student’s progress and specialized programming.
-A summary of the individualized goals and objectives
-A summary of accommodations
-An ongoing record to ensure continuity of programming
-A guide for transition planning.

IPP and Inclusion
 Inclusion is a way of thinking and acting that demonstrates universal acceptance
and promotes a sense of belonging for all learners.
 Having an IPP allows every student to have equitable opportunities to learn and
succeed, however they need to.

Classroom Communities and Support
 It is important that a child isn’t “labelled” as bad, or troubled because he/she has
a learning disability.
Who is in the Support Group?
 Teacher, support staff, administration, other teachers, other students, family, etc.
 An extensive support group promotes good self-esteem
 It really takes a village to raise a child...


- Learning Disabilities. (n.d.). Retrieved June 04, 2017, from
- Diverse Learning Needs | Meeting the Needs of each Student. (n.d.). Retrieved June
04, 2017, from https://education.alberta.ca/diverse-learning-needs/meeting-the-needs-
-Official Definition of Learning Disabilities. (n.d.). Retrieved June 04, 2017, from
-Inclusive Education | What is Inclusion? (n.d.). Retrieved June 04, 2017, from
-Inclusive Education Library. (n.d.). Retrieved June 04, 2017, from
-Instructional Supports | Instructional Supports. (n.d.). Retrieved June 04, 2017, from
-Alexander, J. (2003). The Learning Team- A Handbook for Parents of Children with
Special Needs. Edmonton, AB: Alberta Education.
-Tungland, M. (Ed.). (2002). Unlocking Potential: Key Components of Programming for
Students with Learning Disabilities. Edmonton, AB: Alberta Learning.
-Individualized Program Planning. (2006). Edmonton, AB: Alberta Education.
-Special Education Coding Criteria 2016/2017. (2016). Edmonton, AB: Alberta
-Mauro, T. (n.d.). Special Needs Children Cover an Array of Diagnoses. Retrieved June
04, 2017, from https://www.verywell.com/what-are-special-needs-3106002
- (n.d.). Retrieved June 04, 2017, from https://teach.com/what-is-special-education/