Helping or Hovering?

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Helping or Hovering? Effects of Instructional Assistants Proximity On Students with Disabilities Across Canada, increasing emphasis has been placed on including students with disabilities in regular classrooms. Typically, schools assign an Educational Assistant to support them in the classroom. Recent research into this model has pointed to potential damage to students when schools rely too much on Educational Assistants. Several studies have suggested that too much of a good thing (EA support) can have far-reaching effects. One study completed was published in the Exceptional Children magazine, by Michael F. Giangreco, et al, called “Helping or Hovering? Effects of Instructional Assistant Proximity on Students with Disabilities”…show more content…
The following is a list of considerations for future policy development, school-based practises, training, and research • School districts need to rethink their policies on hiring instructional assistants for individual students. • School staff and families need to reach agreements on when students need the close proximity. • School staff and community members need awareness training on the effects and potential harm to children caused by excessive adult proximity. • School teams need to explicitly clarify the role of the classroom teacher as the instructional leader in the classroom including their roles and responsibilities as the teacher for their students with disabilities. • School staff (e.g., classroom teachers, instructional assistants) should be afforded training in basic instructional procedures that facilitate learning by students with special educational needs in the context of typical classroom activities. • Students with disabilities need to be physically, programmatically, and interactionally included in classroom activities that have been planned by a qualified teacher in conjunction with support staff as needed. • Instructional assistants should be provided with competency-based training that includes ongoing, classroom-based supervision by the
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