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25 Signs Your Child's School Is Really Practicing Inclusion

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Joining Hands
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Inclusion is the big buzzword for students in special education, and many schools have embraced the concept and brought students out of self-contained classes and into mainstream classes where every type of learner is valued.. Many other schools have pretended to do so to get the government and pushy parents off their back, and have implemented the program about as well as you'd expect under those circumstances. How do you know your child's inclusion classroom is the real thing? Look for these 25 signs that there's something good going on:

  1. The special-ed kids are scattered around the classroom, in approximately the same way that girls and boys, kids with different-color hair, and different heights are scattered around the room
  2. The co-teachers actually co-teach.
  3. The special-ed teacher helps any student who needs assistance.
  4. So does the regular-ed teacher.
  5. The classwork your child brings home looks recognizably like regular schoolwork.
  6. The classwork your child brings home does not look like it was done by a paraprofessional.
  7. Your child HAS classwork to bring home.
  8. Your child has classwork to display on bulletin boards and classroom displays, just like other classmates of varying ability.
  9. The regular-ed teacher knows your child's name.
  10. The regular-ed teacher knows your name.
  11. The regular-ed teacher can tell you stories about your child's progress in class.
  12. Good stories.
  13. Kids with special needs are included fully in the life of the school.
  14. Including clubs.
  15. And teams.
  16. And yearbook photos.
  17. And lunch tables.
  18. Differentiated instruction is used to ensure that all students are working at a level that interests and engages them.
  19. Parents of regular-ed students are happy because their kids are working at appropriate levels.
  20. Parents of special-ed students are happy because their kids are working at appropriate levels.
  21. Your child is included for "specials."
  22. And history, and science.
  23. And reading, and math.
  24. Your child is encouraged to participate, ask questions, make observations, find better ways to do things.
  25. So are you.

Doesn't sound like your kid's classroom? Uh-oh. Check for these 25 warning signs of a bogus inclusion effort.

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