Inclusion Book Report

This essay has a total of 1647 words and 7 pages.


Educational Psychology
What a society feels about it's diverse membership, particularly about citizens who are
different, is expressed in the institutions of that society. A close look at the major
institutions of our society the schools, the legislatures, and the courts should tell us a
lot about the place of exceptional children in our society.

In the category of exceptional children one would find a list of any and every child that
requires education in academic matters as well as life skills. These children must work at
things that average society takes for granted. Out of this group of exceptional children
has risen a disability that is drawing more and more attention known as Down Syndrome. The
obvious reason for Down Syndrome children to come to the forefront is their parents. By
this I mean that studies have shown that a couple with two or more college degrees among
them are more likely to have a Downs baby then that of a couple of high school drop outs.
This odd occurrence has lead to more affluent families to give birth to one or more Downs

The limitations facing a Downs child will affect the child's whole life and it is the
environmental circumstances around him that determine how he fares in life. Included in
these circumstances are his family and their unity and maybe most importantly his level of

In our society education plays a big part in all we do and this serves no difference for
the Downs child. As we look back in time, we find that the notion of educating every child
to achieve his or her greatest potential is a relatively new concept. The current use of
the term exceptional is itself a reflection of the radical changes in societies views of
people whom differ from the norm. The world has come along way from the Spartans' practice
of killing infants who did not meet their standards of normalcy, but the journey has been
slow, moving from neglect and mistreatment, to pity and overprotection and finally to
acceptance and integration to the fullest extent possible.

The phrase "Acceptance and integration into society to the fullest extent possible" has
been the topic of the most heated arguments in education today. The term integration has
grown to include such devices as inclusion and mainstreaming. Although the U.S. has come a
long way from the 1850's when 60 percent of people living in poor houses would today have
been classified as exceptional.

The argument presented is have we done too much or not near enough? Proponents of
inclusion believe that all children, regardless of disability or intensity of
exceptionality, should be educated in general education environments. They assume that all
students, including those with mild, moderate, or severe disabilities, should be educated
with peers of the same age and in schools in their neighborhoods. To some advocates of
inclusion any placement other than in the regular classroom posses a serious threat of
putting a child at risk for an inferior education and deprives the child of the social
relationships that can be nurtured in the general education settings. The overarching
concern for those supporting inclusion seems to be the social relationships of the child
with disabilities, rather than mastery of certain academic and technical skills. This
strain falls in line with their idea of total social integration of all society. Inclusion
visionaries will claim if we isolate these kids, during school age years, they will never
be fully excepted by society.

The inclusion fire does not burn without opposition. The most influential of this
opposition is the Learning Disabilities Association of America (LDA). The LDA's view of
inclusion is quite different. LDA believes that the appropriate place for many students
with learning disabilities, especially Down Syndrome, is with a special education
instructor. The LDA assume, these kids often need alternative instructional environments
or teaching strategies that can not or will not be provided within the context of the
regular classroom. The LDA is the most obvious bargaining force of special educators. The
LDA believes that for the most part and especially in the case of the Downs child, the
child benefits most by being under the instruction of an individual trained in the field
of special education. They argue that the reason people push for inclusion is so that.
Social association will occur. Yet, most case studies show that peers do not except the
child. Instead the child is more rejected than if he or she were instructed separate and
just meet with peers in a more social context.
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