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Inclusion: The Past, Present, And Future

4051 words - 16 pages

There are millions of children that are passing through the United States school system every day, not all children possess the same traits, and not all children can learn at the same rate, and do not perform at the same ability. The fact that all children learn differently and some have difficulties learning in general classrooms, special education was put into place to try and take care of these issues. Special education programs were put into place to help all students with disabilities. These children range from general disabilities to more complex and severe disabilities. There has been a revolution occurring in the past several years with education systems, and special education. There have now been several laws that have been passed that mandate changes in special education and the treatment that children, and parents receive, it also changes how the children are being taught, and how the teachers are to also change and conform to this idea called inclusion. Inclusion in the school system simply is stating that children who have learning disabilities, and more severe disabilities are to be included in the general education environment for as long as possible daily. There has been several different names other than inclusion that have been used, but in present times and since the 1990’s inclusion has been the most common term used. “The change in terminology was pushed in part by the philosophy that inclusion would mean more than only physical placement of children with disabilities in the same classroom, but rather it conveyed that children with disabilities would become a part of larger social, community, and societal systems” (Odom, Buysse, & Soukakou, 2011, para. 3). There has not been just one major law that was passed that changed the special education programs, there have been several different mandates and they have been revised numerous times to attempt perfecting what is now known as special education inclusion. Some examples of the laws that have been put into place are the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act (IDEIA), and Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Special education inclusion has been a controversy for the several past years, it is a widely heated topic today, and there are things that will change and continue to promote inclusion in the future.

History of Inclusion
The idea of children with disabilities, whether they be mild or severe has been a very controversial and misunderstood topic. In the past inclusion has brought about huge changes for not only the students, but also the parents and families of these children, and staff at schools. Teachers and education professionals were the first to really feel the wrath and intimidation of this dramatic shift in education. There were several different factors that were coming about that made it very difficult for schools and teachers, the unorganized mandates were strict and didn’t allow much time...

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