What Are Your Current Thoughts about “inclusive Education?”
In order to improve the quality and accessibility of education, it is necessary to create an inclusive environment which will allow maximum participation of students with special needs alongside regular students. Such environment requires a number of changes to the design of schools which are the focus of inclusive education.
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It is general knowledge that education is a basic human right, which means all students in spite of their learning disabilities should have equal access to quality education. Inclusive education is an approach to education which welcomes diversity amongst students and integrates the education of special needs students with mainstream education (Policy guidelines on inclusion in education, 2009).
The inclusive model suggests a number of changes to the design of schools and educational programs, all of which are aimed at creating equal opportunities for all students. Such changes include providing written or pictorial explanations for all instructions in the classroom, utilizing text-to-speech for students with visual impairments, and in general, using current scientific evidence to improve the academic performance of special needs students by providing multisensory experiences.
Although it is a challenging process, achieving barrier-free education provides multiple benefits to the students and society as a whole. I believe that integrating students with special needs into mainstream classrooms means the society will learn to accept and embrace disability, and allow regular students make friends and socialize with special needs students. Studies show that inclusive education not only focuses on the best interests of students but also helps overcome stereotypes (Rieser, 2008, p. 1).
In other words, by including special needs students in the life of regular schools, we promote the culture of respect and reduce the chances of harassment or bullying. Although inclusion is concerned with the quality of experiences of students with learning disabilities, such approach benefits society as a whole. The inclusive environment allows students with learning disabilities to integrate into the society and improves the quality of education. This model allows for more of the adults to gain the necessary knowledge and skills which are required to meet the challenges of today’s job market.
Inclusive education is sometimes argued to be too costly to implement. However, the costs can be elevated by re-use of technology and resources, which are already available at special schools. In addition, repurposing financial resources currently allocated for students who repeat the grade may be examined. Although difficult to estimate, inclusive education may result in more skilled workers, which will benefit the economy and further offset costs.
In spite of the challenges posed by the implementation of inclusive education, it is necessary to improve the quality and accessibility of education.
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24-Hour Cultural Analysis: The Representation of Disability
Due to the media’s overreaching influence on people’s views and opinions, the positive portrayal of handicapped people is necessary to promote the culture of respect and tolerance. In a 24-hour period, I have monitored the representation of disability in the media and the perception of disabled people out on the streets.
In my world, disability is represented at a variety of societal levels, from the one at which the people suffering from poverty exist to the middle-class people that face the challenges of disability due to congenital issues or accidents. For example, I have encountered disabled people from the least privileged social background, who are forced to beg in the streets.
On the opposite side of the class hierarchy, there are disabled people living in my neighborhood, which is considered as middle-class. At present, due to the increasingly large significance of social tolerance and acceptance, people with disabilities are encouraged to be socially active and viewed as courageous and even outstanding for doing so (Noguchi, 2016). Although some disabled people tend to disagree with this approach, I do not see the harmful implications that it may possibly have. Instead, it invites the target audience to become active members of the community, which is essential for their further development.
Personally, I find disability to be very visible as it immediately causes me to feel sympathetic toward the people with disabilities. I must admit that the emotions that I experience might be seen as somewhat insulting to the people with disabilities that strive for proving that they are not to be differentiated from the rest of the society, let alone be the object of pity.
However, it seems that the modern society does not have a specific stance on the attitude toward disabled people outside of emphasizing the need for them to engage in social and community-related activities. Therefore, for me, it is very hard to ostracize people with disabilities no matter what race, gender, or social tier they belong to (Armstrong, 2016; Moore, 2016).
My observations suggest that people in general also seem more accepting of disabled people. It is unthinkable nowadays to ridicule a handicapped person, and generally, thanks to the coverage of disability by the media and the implementation of various policies, we do not pay as much attention to disabled people in public as before. In the past, the message was that handicapped people are helpless. Nowadays, the message is that handicapped people can do as much, if not more, as regular people, once the obstacles are removed.
Armstrong, J. (2016). Brave disabled student defies doctors at graduation by picking up own degree on a stretcher.
Moore, J. (2016). Theresa May’s Britain is a chilling place for disabled people like me.
Noguchi, Y. (2016). Workplaces can be particularly stressful for disabled Americans, poll finds.
Rieser, R. (2008). Implementing Inclusive Education.