Thoughts regarding inclusion of children w/disabilities in regular classrooms. - Page 3
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  1. #27
    Super Moderator NationalTitles17's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts regarding inclusion of children w/disabilities in regular classrooms.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bamabuzzard View Post
    We sure are asking a lot of teachers who teach in general classrooms to be all things to all students. There's a saying that applies to someone who tries to be all things to all people (from a business standpoint) that I think could easily apply to this topic. "Jack of all trades but master of none". In the medical field we have physicians who are specialists. Our general practitioners do not have the capacity to know or even be trained to effectively treat all medical problems such as the kidney, heart, spine, etc. It's simply too much to ask for what our expectations are. I think to some degree this same principle applies with teachers. It sounds good, in theory/"on paper". But is it truly realistic in application?

    We are very complex creatures and anyone who has taught in a classroom knows that it is very hard to effectively teach kids without special needs. Because each child is so different and unique regarding personality, temperament, home life etc. So many dynamics are at play that the teacher already has to deal with. Special needs is a very broad classification. Just like the "spectrum" for Autism is very broad. Is it realistic that a general classroom teacher has the capacity to be properly trained to deal with all special needs "out there"? Granted, I'm not saying the "regular" classroom teacher shouldn't have at least some general educational training on SPED students. But to expect them to be trained on the same level as someone who is specialized in SPED is asking a bit too much, IMO. Heck, there are specializations within the SPED educational program and the reason there is, is to try to provide the best for the child.
    We are asking/demanding a lot. I don't think gen ed teachers need to be all things to all students but as inclusion is the law of the land for 45 years I'd think the entire profession might have figured out how to have basic knowledge RE: special needs conditions and how to directly implement IEP's. Of course you need those who specialize. We'd be lost at times without them. But as teachers are obligated by law and professionalism to refer when needed, contribute to the plan, and implement the plan - we'd better be teaching the teachers the basics. That does not happen apparently quite often now so how are they supposed to do it? Perhaps the entire model has to change (I believe it does but I'm a parent, not a teacher).

    Doctors and nurses have broad generalized training for more common conditions. Only through additional education and experience do they become specialized. That, I imagine, is true of teachers as well. What I am saying is that training that is devoid of learning about how to recognize and treat common conditions (as related to education) in the classroom is not acceptable. It would not be acceptable for a general/family practitioner and is not acceptable for teachers. Learning basic signs of an educational disability and strategies to deal with it is not an extraordinary burden.

    The problem before inclusion was that special needs students were warehoused in segregated classrooms with little to no chance of actually learning anything at all. We cannot go back to that.
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  2. #28
    Super Moderator NationalTitles17's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts regarding inclusion of children w/disabilities in regular classrooms.

    Quote Originally Posted by alabama mike1 View Post
    If true inclusion is taking place, the intervention teacher and the regular education teacher should be in the same classroom working together during classroom instruction. I have been working on a schedule all morning to split our incoming 9th grade intervention kids up into 3 groups so they will get Algebra 1 and then an RTI (response to intervention) class in the afternoon. The teachers are in the room together and then IF NEEDED, during the RTI, the intervention specialist works with students who may need extra help or small groups of students. By law, you also have to keep a 51%:49% ratio between regular education students and intervention students. In our case, we have 29 IEP students coming in as freshmen. I put 10 IEP students in one Alg. class, 10 in another and 9 in the last. They stay together for Algebra and English, which is what the goals of the IEP addresses. Make sense?

    Here is the link to the Alabama Department of Education Special Education Department. https://www.alsde.edu/sec/ses/Pages/home.aspx
    I wish every school was perfect and that this was always the scenario. It is not and it is not.
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  3. #29
    BamaNation All-American alabama mike1's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts regarding inclusion of children w/disabilities in regular classrooms.

    Quote Originally Posted by NationalTitles17 View Post
    ....I also recently had a parent whose child I know well (and who is definitely ADHD but also shows obvious signs of autism - enough to get an evaluation, IMHO) well, she raised her concerns with the school system verbally and nothing happened. The concern was completely ignored. What she did not understand is that the request for testing must be in writing (and you better keep copies and maybe CC a couple of people) or some school admins will just pretend it never happened. I've heard similar stories from parents multiple times. Parents don't know the rules. Educators do and some - not all but some - take advantage of this to deny the child an evaluation....
    If a parent makes a request in writing, the 120 day count starts as soon as any school official receives the request. With that being said, the school, now has the responsibility to hold and Intervention Assistance Meeting (IAT), get parental consent for testing, test the student, hold the meeting to let the parent know if their child qualified and then write the Intervention Plan (IEP). This is federal law!

    Some of you have spoken about accomodations and modifications. Here are the definitions as related to school:

    Accomodations- allows a student to complete the same assignment or test as othes students, but with a change in the timing, formatting, setting, scheduling, response and/or presentation. This does not alter in any significiant way what the test or assignment measures. This can be done for any student!


    Modifications- an adjustment to an assignment or a test that changes the standard or what the test or assignment is supposed to measure. Some examples of possible modifications include a student completing work on part of a standard, a student completing an alternate assignment that is more easily achievable than the standard assignment.
    This is for students with an IEP!

    A 504 is written for medical needs such as a diabetic or other health impairment.

  4. #30
    Super Moderator NationalTitles17's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts regarding inclusion of children w/disabilities in regular classrooms.

    So what is a school's responsibility regarding informing every single parent that these requests must be in writing prior to the parent asking for an evaluation? Again, the average person does not know this.

    Now, we could take the stance that "too bad, so sad" if you are ignorance of the rules but that leaves kids on the hook for their parents' ignorance. Health care professionals have an obligation to educate. While education is not quite so complicated as health care I don't believe the average person can be expected to know things they've never had to know and never been informed.
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  5. #31
    BamaNation All-American alabama mike1's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts regarding inclusion of children w/disabilities in regular classrooms.

    Quote Originally Posted by NationalTitles17 View Post
    So what is a school's responsibility regarding informing every single parent that these requests must be in writing prior to the parent asking for an evaluation? Again, the average person does not know this.

    Now, we could take the stance that "too bad, so sad" if you are ignorance of the rules but that leaves kids on the hook for their parents' ignorance. Health care professionals have an obligation to educate. While education is not quite so complicated as health care I don't believe the average person can be expected to know things they've never had to know and never been informed.
    If a parent makes a verbal request to the principal, regular/intervention teacher or any certified school employee, the person should tell the parent immediately that they need to put the request in writing if that is the board of education's policy. If its not board approved, its not policy!

  6. #32
    Super Moderator NationalTitles17's Avatar
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    Re: Thoughts regarding inclusion of children w/disabilities in regular classrooms.

    Quote Originally Posted by alabama mike1 View Post
    If a parent makes a verbal request to the principal, regular/intervention teacher or any certified school employee, the person should tell the parent immediately that they need to put the request in writing if that is the board of education's policy. If its not board approved, its not policy!
    Well, there are policies and then there are "policies" just like there are honorable people and then there are "honorable" people. I recognize that some people are lazy and/or don't care to do what's right. The policy should be explicitly that any request in whatever form requires the school employee to place the matter in writing.
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    The TideFan formerly known as NationalTitles16, NationalTitles15, NationalTitles14, NationalTitles13, and NationalTitles12.

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