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Educational Inclusion

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Overview

Inclusion in education means more than a child with disabilities just being physically present in a general education classroom; it means they have access to the same curriculum as their peers, with appropriate accommodations and supports, and they have opportunities for meaningful participation and socialization. All of these things can be vital for a student's growth and progress. The following resources help parents understand the benefits of inclusion and advocate for a more inclusive school environment through IEP goals and other advocacy tools.

What does inclusion mean?

Inclusion is the process of changing the school environment so that a student with unique challenges can be successful. For our kids, inclusion means being able to participate with their typically developing peers in the classroom, extracurricular programs, and other activities like P.E. with any accommodations or services they need to do so. A huge variety of supports can be offered, including a 1:1 aide, assistive technology, and behavior support. Related services such as speech and occupational therapy can be pushed in. You can learn all about educational inclusion and what it looks like in practice in our article Inclusion 101.

Contents


Overview

What does inclusion mean?

Why should I advocate for inclusion in my child’s school?

How do I get school staff on board with inclusion?

Where can I write inclusion into the IEP?

Related Parent Questions

What should I do if my school is not supportive of inclusion?
If your school district is not supportive of inclusion, you can use the law to insist on placement in GenEd. All services should be portable, so you can ask for expertise to be brought to your child in their GenEd classroom.
How do I write inclusion into my child’s IEP?
When discussing services, ask if it’s possible for the service to be provided in the GenEd setting as push-in, meaning that it occurs in the GenEd classroom. If it has to be pull-out, ask if it’s possible to be provided outside the regular school day to minimize disruption to GenEd time.
How can parents advocate for UDL to be used with their kids?
Parents can ask for UDL under the accommodations section of an IEP. Parent and teacher training should be explicitly written into the IEP, in the Supplementary Aids and Services section alongside any other supports the child receives.

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