Full Inclusion in the Classroom
In: Social Issues
Full Inclusion in the ClassroomFull Inclusion is the theory that children with disabilities, particularly those with learning disabilities, should be placed in regular classrooms full time. It refers to the movement that all students with disabilities, regardless of type or severity, are educated full time in a general education classroom and program. This method would allow disabled children to make friends with “normal” children and be given the opportunity to learn in a stimulating environment, where they can get the “real world” education that they will need to be able to fit into society and flourish as productive members. Under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, students with special needs are entitled to a full, free, public education in regular educational programs and settings. The inclusion classroom would provide exactly that, a setting for these students to interact with their peers of all ability levels, thus most accurately mirroring the real world outside of school.
At current most schools in the United States do not use the method of full inclusion. The current trend in education is to use either mainstreaming or what is considered the least restrictive environment (Feldman 273). Mainstreaming refers to the practice of educating students with special needs in regular classes during specific time periods based on their skills. This means regular education classes are combined with special education classes. Least Restrictive Environment refers to the concept that children with disabilities should be educated to the maximum extent possible with children who are not disabled while meeting all their learning needs and physical requirements. The type of setting is stipulated in a child's IEP.
To fully understand the problems facing the full inclusion classroom, one must first examine the history of special education. In 1817, The Connecticut Asylum at Hartford for the Instruction of Deaf and Dumb Persons opens. It is the first permanent school for the deaf in the...