My Child Is In An Inclusion Classroom. Should I Be Worried?

With the school year quickly approaching us, many parents are beginning to learn a bit more about what the school year will bring for their children. A question we often get from parents is whether or not they should be nervous about their child with no special needs being in an inclusion classroom.

We know that it can be hard to imagine because of all of the horror stories people tell about schools being ill-equipped to handle children with special needs, but inclusion classrooms are a great situation for everyone involved. First of all, the fact that your classroom is an inclusion classroom means that the child/children with special needs are on a defined education plan, and have already worked on what the best strategies are for not only their education, but how to keep them calm and ready to learn in a classroom environment.

With that in mind, inclusion classrooms have a much better teacher-student ratio than traditional classrooms. As special needs children often require an instructor to help them pay attention and learn at their own speed, inclusion classrooms have more adults in the classroom at any given time. While the special needs instructors are there for their special needs students, they will be able to collaborate with the head teacher to keep the classroom calm and informative for every student. In addition, if your child has a question during a lesson, they might be able to ask the special needs instructor instead of disrupting the head teacher with a question. Little things like this add up over the course of the year, and you will find that inclusion classrooms are great not only for children with special needs, but for the students in the class without special needs.

One thing many parents get nervous about when it comes to inclusion classrooms is how the teacher(s) will react to a student with special needs acting up and disrupting the class. As we stated before, there are a lot of “horror stories” concerning special needs students disrupting the normal flow of a classroom. While there is some level of truth to this, that disruption often comes before the establishment of their IEP, which contains thoroughly researched and practiced strategies and methods to help the student with special needs develop without distracting themselves or others. Essentially, being in an inclusion classroom means that there are a certain amount of students in your class that teachers are perfectly prepared to deal with in the event of an outburst, which cannot be said about the children without IEPs. Compare that to troublesome students who might not have an IEP: does it really matter if they have or don’t have special needs if they are a disruption to your students’ education? At the end of the day, you just want your child to learn without interruption: IEPs and inclusion classrooms help them do that.

If you would like to learn more about special needs in our schools, please continue to visit our site as we continue to write more content. Have a wonderful Monday!

IDEA: Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

This monumental piece of legislation stems from an earlier Act in 1975 called The Education For All Handicapped Children Act. As of 2001, more than 6 million children in the United States were characterized as disabled. The IDEA Act requires that public schools provide specialized services for children with disabilities from birth to the age of 21 years old.

One of the ways they do this is by creating an Individualized Education Program also known as an IEP. Every student who is disabled is mandated by law to have an IEP. An IEP is a plan designed by parents, teachers, specialists and if possible the student to determine current achievement level as well as specific goals to be fulfilled by the end of the year as well as services necessary to achieve those goals.

Disabilities that are covered an IEP include:

  • Autism
  • Deaf-Blindness
  • Deafness
  • Emotional Disturbance
  • Hearing Impairment
  • Intellectual Disability (Mental Retardation)
  • Multiple Disabilities
  • Orthopedic Impairment
  • Other Health Impairments
  • Specific Learning Disability
  • Speech or Language Impairment
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Visual Impairment