Inclusion of Students with Learning Disabilities Essay

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Inclusion is a topic that is still at the forefront of educational controversy, in the classroom and also in Congress. According to The Cyclopedic Education Dictionary, inclusion can be defined in two ways: one, inclusion can be defined as the placement of disabled children in a general classroom setting for the entire school day and two, inclusion can be defined as the placement of disabled students into a general classroom setting for part of the day while they are placed in a special setting during the other part of the day (Spafford and Grosser, 1998). Parents and teachers have been debating the issue of full inclusion of disabled students in public schools since the passing of the Education for all Handicapped Children Act of 1975.…show more content…
In 1997, IDEA was revised again with two principle emphases; students with disabilities should be included in the general curriculum whenever it is most useful for the student and students with disabilities should be held to the same standards as their non-disabled peers (Romano and Chambliss, 2000). As a provision of the IDEA, the child’s parents and teachers, along with other school staff, create an individualized education program (IEP) when the child is ready to begin education. This team of people assess the special needs that child requires in a general education classroom and makes sure that the child will be successful in an inclusive classroom (PTA, 2002). In order to accommodate disabled children in public schools when the law was first enacted, Congress promised to pay forty percent of the added expenses each child would make for the school. To this day, Congress has not lived up to that promise and is paying only seventeen percent of the costs (PTA, 2002). There were several bills proposed in Congress during 2001 that would have mandated full funding for IDEA, but those bills failed and twenty percent of the funding for IDEA is legally used for other purposes (PTA, 2002). The issue of inclusion is heavily debated and has many different supporters and opponents; some advocate full inclusion while others only support mainstreaming, the partial inclusion of students, while still others oppose the idea altogether. Parents,
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