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Inclusive Education Philosophy
 Participation of students with exceptional needs in inclusive settings is based on the
philosophy of equality, sharing, participation and the worth and dignity of
individuals. This philosophy is based on the belief that all children can learn and
reach their full potential given opportunity, effective teaching and appropriate
resources. The Board of Trustees of Palliser Regional Schools supports educating
students with special supports and service needs in their regular classrooms in
neighbourhood schools as the first placement option, in consultation with students,
parents/guardians and school staff. Palliser's mandate reflects this philosophy, and
can be found in Board Policy 5 Planning Cycle, Long Term Strategic Plan
 Palliser Regional Schools agrees that students with exceptional needs must be full
participants in school and society. The regular classroom is viewed as the most
enabling environment for the student with exceptional needs because of the
increased opportunity to participate with same-aged peers without exceptional
needs. Inclusion, by definition, refers not merely to setting, but to specially
designed instruction and support for students with special supports and service
needs in regular classrooms and community schools. Often, meeting the learning
needs on either end of the spectrum improves the quality of education for everyone
in the classroom, as well as promoting the awareness and acceptance of diversity.
“Inclusion is a process. Inclusive education is not merely about
providing access into mainstream school for pupils who have
previously been excluded. It is not about closing down an
unacceptable system of segregated provision and dumping
those pupils in an unchanged mainstream system. Existing
school systems - in terms of physical factors, curriculum
aspects, teaching expectations and styles, leadership roleswill
have to change. This is because inclusive education is about
the participation of all children and young people and the
removal of all forms of exclusionary practice” (Barton, 1998).
 The murky past in the lives of disabled children has revealed that primitive
societies considered them to be wrath of God, symbols of sin or
punishment and burden to live in the society. History tells us that they were
killed because they were imperfect. During middle ages, these less
individuals were brought under the shelter and care of religious
establishments, whence actually the threat to their survival decreased. In
the late 1700s, it was proved that education and training was possible and
during the 19th century, there were schools established for the first time for
people with disabilities. These trends towards segregated education soar to
peak in size and numbers during the 20th century. Remedial education,
special education and integration have had their time in the field and
current era is propelled by the term ‘Inclusion’.
 The definitions of inclusive education are abound. There is no universally
accepted definition for ‘Inclusion’. It is shaped by the heterogeneity of
inclusive ideas subsumed by history and local cultural perspectives. These
ideas and practices across countries sometimes converge and at other times
remain isolated.
Models of Services
 The various initiatives for disabled always reflected two
primary approaches to rehabilitation i.e., individual pathology
and social pathology. In the former approach, the individual is
seen as problem while in latter the environment is seen as
problem. Within these two approaches, four models of
disability emerged, which are:
 The charity model
 The bio-centric model
 The functional model
 The human rights model (NCERT, 2006).
The Charity Model
 The charity model brought out various welfare
measures like providing care, shelter and basic needs.
This resulted in establishment of more number of
residential units that provided custodial care. These
institutions functioned like detention centres and
there was no public accountability or comprehensive
provisions of services that would enhance the quality
of life for individuals with disabilities. Eventually,
this model resulted in marginalization and disconnect
with the larger society.
The Bio-centric Model
Evolving from the previous model, bio-centric
model regards disability as a medical or
genetic condition and prompted to seek
medical treatments as only means of
management. The role of family, society and
government was flippant according to this
model. However, medical diagnoses and
biological treatments have to be necessarily
part of the rehabilitation of the disabled along
with the family and social support to
participate in the activities of social life.
The Functional Model
 In the functional model, entitlement to rights is
differentiated according to judgments of individual
incapacity and the extent to which a person is
perceived as being independent to exercise his/her
rights. For example, a child’s right to education is
dependent on whether or not the child can access the
school and participate in the classroom, rather than
the obligation being on the school system becoming
accessible to children with disabilities. Thus, it may
not pose obligation to schools for facilitating barrier
free education.
The Human Rights Model
 The human rights model positions disability as an important dimension of
human culture and it affirms that all human beings are born with certain
inalienable rights. According to this model, the principle of respect for
difference and acceptance of disability as part of human diversity and
humanity is important, as disability is a universal feature of the human
condition. It purports to identify those barriers for participation in society
and removes them. Advocating for non discrimination, it also calls for
reasonable differentiation only to create specialized support services for
effective participation in the society. The human rights model to disability
on the one hand requires that the States play an active role in enhancing the
level of access to public freedoms and on the other requires that the
enjoyment of rights by persons with disabilities is not hampered by thirdparty actors in the private sphere. Educational institutions and industry,
both in the public and private sectors, should ensure equitable treatment to
persons with disabilities.
Phases of Services
Three phases are evident when looking at the services provided
for individuals with disabilities
Era of institutionalization
 In the first period, era of institutionalization, dependence and
segregation were impetus and services were underpinned by
medical model. This roughly ended in mid 1970s paving way
to era of deinstitutionalization. The locus of services for
people with disabilities during this period was out of home. As
a result, institutional population and nursing home population
soared. The services were limited to medical concerns and
primary care. Observed by inadequacies and abuse in
institutional care, litigation increased and development for
standards of services was articulated. The standards were an
effort to assure physical, social and psychological well-being
of the persons with disabilities in institutional care. Care
standards on staffing ratios, daily schedules, professional
qualifications, nutritional content of the meals, physical and
personal space of the residents, number of residents etc. were
spelled out.
Era of deinstitutionalization
 This period prevailed during 1976 to 1986 and was marked by creation of
community services and emphasis on provision of specialized services for
individuals with disabilities to learn, grow and participate in the activities
of society. During this period, day care programs, individualized
programming, outpatient centers and accessible housing were part of the
reform. The person with disabilities became an object to be trained,
habilitated, socialized, screened, assessed and assisted through a continuum
of educational, vocational and residential settings. Small intermediate care
facilities, half way housing, group homes etc were alternatives to
institutionalization. The guiding force was the assumption that all people
regardless of the levels of their abilities or severity of their disabilities
could grow and develop. This approach was actively applied to
interventions for these individuals to acquire skills. Elaborate teaching
regimes, pre-articulated learning objectives and careful monitoring of the
progress on individual basis became contingent. The new therapeutic and
rehabilitation efforts were developed by a growing cadre of mental health
Era of community membership
The third and current period, era of community
membership, is steered by functional supports to
enhance community integration, independence,
quality of life, and individualization. The concept of
functional supports focused on adapting the
environment and supports to the individual instead of
adapting the individual to the environment. The
emerging emphasis is removing the stigma of
“clienthood” from people with disabilities and
moving the support to where people lived, i.e.,
instead of surrounded by professionals and therapists,
let them be surrounded by friends, family and
Perspectives of Inclusive
• Clough and Corbett (2000) discussed five
perspectives in line with historical
development of inclusive ideas and practices.
The authors in their work have stated that these
perspectives are never wholly exclusive of
each other nor do they have linear
development of ideas. In the course of time,
ideas and practices became either overriding to
each other or remained exclusive.
The Psycho-medical legacy
• This is understood as the system of broadly
medicalized ideas which essentially saw the
individual as being somehow ‘in deficit’ and in
turn assumed a need for a ‘special’ education
for those individuals. Clinic based assessments
were provided by doctors, or psychiatrists
mainly to determine if the child needs to be
placed in “special education” in a segregated
The sociological response
• This position broadly represents the critique of
the “psycho-medical legacy”, and draws
attention to a social construction of special
educational needs. It clearly focused on social
disadvantage rather than individual deficit.
Barton (in interview, 1988) said it is about
removal of all forms of oppression.
Curricular approaches
• Such approaches emphasize the role of the
curriculum in both meeting and for some
writers, effectively creating - learning
difficulties. The above two perspectives
however powerful they might be, offered no
practical solutions to the teachers in the
classrooms. At the same time, a related
development of curriculum and teaching
approaches, which helped to foster a more
inclusive school sprang. It articulated on broad
range of interventions delivered through the
School Improvement
• This movement emphasizes the importance of
systemic organization in pursuit of truly
comprehensive schooling. Hopkins, West and
Ainscow (1996) in their work on “Improving the
quality of education for all” developed a notion of
‘school effectiveness’ as a movement.
• This approach focused on the role of pedagogy in
creating inclusion. Stenhouse (1975) stated that
curriculum development involves bringing practice in
classrooms and teaching plans closer together through
an evaluation by teachers using their own curricula
Disability studies critique
• These perspectives often from ‘outside’ education
elaborate an overtly political response to the
exclusionary effects of the psycho-medical model.
Disability studies is as much an discipline as
educational studies and made unique contributions to
debates on inclusive education. It concerns specific
issues like social inclusion, inclusion in employment
and housing, and educational inclusion in larger
contexts. Oliver (1990) has brought out
interrelationships between educational and social
• The education of students with disabilities is
based on a number of beliefs and principles.
These beliefs and principles guide the policies
and services provided for persons with
• The four key elements of inclusion presented
by UNESCO (2005) provide a useful summary
of the principles that support inclusive
4 Key Elements
• 1. Inclusion is a process. It has to be seen as a neverending search to find better ways of responding to
diversity. It is about learning how to live with
difference and learning how to learn from difference.
Differences come to be seen more positively as a
stimulus for fostering learning amongst children and
• 2. Inclusion is concerned with the identification and
removal of barriers. It involves collecting, collating
and evaluating information from a wide variety of
sources in order to plan for improvements in policy
and practice. It is about using evidence of various
kinds to stimulate creativity and problem - solving.
• 3. Inclusion is about the presence, participation and
achievement of all students. ‘Presence’ is concerned with
where children are educated and how reliably and punctually
they attend; ‘participation’ relates to the quality of their
experiences and must incorporate the views of learners and
‘achievement’ is about the outcomes of learning across the
curriculum, not just test and exam results.
• 4. Inclusion invokes a particular emphasis on those groups of
learners who may be at risk of marginalization, exclusion or
underachievement. This indicates the moral responsibility to
ensure that those ‘at risk’ are carefully monitored, and that
steps are taken to ensure their presence, participation and
achievement. Seven inter - connected areas of key principles
are put forward by European Agency for Development in
Special Needs Education (2009).
• Prior to 1944, the educational provisions were made
based on the type of disabilities and were
predominantly welfare measures. It focused more on
livelihood training rather than education. However
“inclusive education” gained momentum in
developed countries like USA, UK and Canada with
policy initiatives and researches to promote
education. Increased awareness and advocacy among
parents on the educational needs of their children also
exerted pressure to improve educational provisions
(Dash, 2006).
An overview of the legal frameworks
related to inclusive education from
1948 to 2007
2007 United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
2006 Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of Diversity in Cultural Expressions
1999 Convention concerning the Prohibition and Immediate Action for the Elimination of
the Worst Forms of Child Labour
1990 Convention on the Rights of the Child
1989 Convention concerning Indigenous and Tribal People in Independent Countries
1979 Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women
1965 International Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Racial Discrimination
1960 Convention against Discrimination in Education
1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights
Inclusive education means all learners, young people—with or
without disabilities being able to learn together in ordinary
preschool provisions, schools, and community educational
settings with appropriate network of support services.
Inclusion is seen as a process of addressing and responding to
the diversity of needs of all children, youth and adults through
increasing participation in learning, cultures and communities
and reducing and eliminating exclusion within and from
education. It involves changes and modifications in content,
approaches, structures and strategies with a common vision
that covers all children of the appropriate age range and a
conviction that it is the responsibility of the regular system to
educate all children (UNESCO, 2009).
• Over the years, although government programmes such as
Operation Blackboard8 and Lok Jumbish9 focused mainly on
infrastructure, girls, scheduled
• Operation Blackboard was launched in 1987 to improve the
school environment. It aimed to enhance the retention and
learning achievement of children by providing essential
facilities in all primary schools.
• Lok Jumbish is to promote community mobilization and
participation thereby ensuring that village community takes
responsibility for providing quality education for every child
in their efforts to universalize primary education and improve
quality. caste and scheduled tribe children, others had or have
inclusive education. Components which ensure the visibility of
children with disabilities.
 This community schools programme started in 1998 and now
replaced by SSA, was a collaboration between the
Government of India and the UNDP, UNICEF, UNESCO, the
ILO, UNFPA and supported the government drive towards
universal primary education. It covered 120, mainly rural
blocks in 9 States where there is evidence of low female
literacy, child labour and SC / ST children not catered for
under DPEP (Mukhopadhyay, 2005).Unfortunately, due to
limited availability of data, it is not possible to elaborate on
any issues arising on the Janshala programme, which has a
component designed to improve the attendance of difficult to
reach groups of children including children with disabilities.
Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA)
Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) is the
government’s millennial “Education for All”
umbrella program for all education schemes,
which aims to universalize elementary
The goals are that all children aged 6 - 14 - i)
will be in some form of education by 2003, ii)
will complete 5 years’ primary education by
2007 and iii) will complete 8 years’ education
by 2010 (GOI, 2002b).
Non Governmental
There are many international, national, and
local NGOs involved with disability issues in
India. Many local NGOs, while diverse and
widespread tend to be based on a charity /
welfare approach (Thomas, 2004) and
informed by the medical model. Although the
exact number is unknown, there are at least
1,000 NGOs and voluntary organizations
actively engaged in education of which the
government funded 701 with grants in aid in
Private schools
• The explosive growth of private schools in recent years in
India, in both urban and rural areas is seen by many to be a
result of dissatisfaction with the poor quality education
provision in government schools (Nambissan, 2003; Singal &
Rouse, 2003). However, the private schools which have been
voluntarily implementing inclusive education are mostly found
in urban areas demonstrating the geographical inequalities so
prevalent in the Indian context. In addition, as these private
schools require the payment of fees, this inclusive education is
not accessible to all and so somewhat exclusive, although
some admit ‘bright’ children from deprived backgrounds as a
charitable gesture
DoE values professionalism, respect, innovation,
diversity and excellence. Through quality strategies,
programs, people, partnerships and systems, the
Department of Education is focused on Growing
Success Together for all Territorials. We believe that
inclusivity embraces the idea that everyone is an
individual and their diversity is respected. Inclusion
starts from a recognition of the differences between
students and works to minimize barriers in education
for all students.
Inclusion in education means:
 Valuing all students
 Recognizing that inclusion in education is one aspect of an
inclusive society •
 Increasing the participation of students in, and reducing their
exclusion from, the culture, curricula and communities of
 Restructuring the culture, policies and practices in schools so
that they respond to the diversity of students. Inclusion
involves adjusting curriculum, assessment practices, teaching
styles and the physical environment to provide for the needs of
all students.
Act and the Northern Territory AntiDiscrimination Act 2014. Policies and resources
to support the inclusion of students include:
 PowerPoint presentations
 Parent brochure
 A set of support guidelines
The Whole School Approach to Improving
Student Learning Principals, as leaders of the
school, are accountable for student
performance and achieving the school’s
improvement goals and performance targets
through effective, quality education services.
In aligning the Students with Disability Policy
implementation with the Accountability and
Performance Improvement Framework (APIF),
principals can:
Build the capacity of the school
Be accountable for the learning outcomes and
wellbeing of students
Ensure that all school staff meet expected
standards of service provision
 Ensure the school complies with relevant
legislation, regulations and organizational
standards including the management of
finances, assets and other resource
Philosophy of inclusion –
problems and challenges
Dr. Pallvi Pandit
 The right of every child to education is proclaimed in The
Universal Declaration of Human Right; besides, education is
also a fundamental human right. The Universal Declaration of
Human Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the
Children all stipulate that the right of everyone to education is
the responsibility of the whole world. As is well known the
most difficult point in universalizing the compulsory education
lies in education for the disabled, especially in povertystricken areas.
'Including the Excluded' - "Inclusion is about the
intentional building of relationships where difference is
welcomed and all benefit."
Inclusion is not a new concept in education. Related
terms with a longer history include mainstreaming,
integration, normalization, least restrictive
environment, deinstitutionalization, and regular
education initiative. Some use several of these terms
interchangeably; others make distinctions
Problems or Barriers with
Inclusion in the Classroom
Despite the principles of inclusion underlying
legislation and policy and its inherent presence in the
documents research suggests that inclusion in actual
practice varies widely from service to service.
Children with special needs are often seen as
requiring special education separate to the
mainstream. This limits their attendance and full
participation in the regular life of the service.
Separation gives rise to a number of barriers to
inclusion, including hostility from other children’s
parents, resourcing issues, and a lack of knowledge
about how to include children with special needs.
The following are some of the external barriers
 Attitudinal barriers
It has been noted that disabled
students suffer from physical bullying, or
emotional bullying. These negative attitudes
results in social discrimination and thus leads
to isolation, which produces barriers to
inclusion. Regarding disabled children some
regions still maintain established beliefs that
educating the disabled is pointless. It is sad to
note here that these barriers are caused by
society, which is more serious to any particular
medical impairment.
 Physical barriers:
Along with the attitudinal barriers which are faced by
the learners on the daily basis, another important barrier is the
physical barriers, which includes school buildings,
playgrounds, washrooms, library etc. Apart from this, the
majority of schools are physically inaccessible to many
learners because of poor buildings, particularly rural areas.
 Inappropriate Curriculum as a barriers:
In any education system, the curriculum is one of the
major obstacles or tools to facilitate the development of more
inclusive system. Curriculum includes the broad aims of
education and has its implications on transactional and
evaluation strategies. In our country of diversity, curriculum is
designed centrally, hence which leaves little flexibility for
local adaptations or for teachers to experiment and try out new
 Untrained Teachers as barriers:
For implementing the inclusive education successfully, it
is important that teachers must have positive attitudes towards
learners with special needs. But, because of lack of
knowledge, education, understanding, or effort the teachers
give inappropriate substitute work to the learners, which
eventually leads to learners dissatisfaction and poor quality of
 Organization of the Education System:
In our country, there are different types of schools such as
private, government; public schools are developing inequality
by offering differential levels of facilities and support. Those
having an access to private schools have higher possibility of
success as compared to those who go to government schools.
Therefore, it is important like many developed countries, the
common school system policy must be place properly.
 Funding System: Quite a number of factors can be interpreted
as barriers for inclusion. In some countries the funding system
is not enhancing inclusive practices (Meijer, 1999). Not only
the funding system may inhibit inclusion processes; but also
the existence of a large segregated setting itself is a hindrance
for inclusion.
 Problem for Classroom Teachers: A classroom teacher is
expected to select educational methodology to best suit each
student. This is a challenging goal for one teacher who
potentially has more than 30 students in each of five to seven
classes. Most students can be grouped with other students
whose educational needs are similar. This may reduce the
planning required to two or three groups. If you add special
needs students who have severe learning delays,
developmental issues, or who speak little or no English, this
task can feel almost insurmountable – especially if the
inclusive classroom does not include a co-teacher
 Problem for Special Education Teachers:
The biggest problem for special education teachers who have
students in inclusive classrooms is being available to every student. For
example, if a particular subject teacher has 50 students who are distributed
through 15 classes during any given period there is no way to assist every
student every day. Students may have to be pulled out of class a few times a
week for additional services, which also impacts the ability of the child and
classroom teacher to maintain pace
 Problems for Students:
Special education and mainstream students both benefit from being
in a classroom together. After all, work and life are not segregated by
intelligence or ability. However, there are still some problems that need to
be recognized. In a classroom of 30, with one or two special education
students, it can be difficult for the classroom teacher to give the individual
time and attention the students require and deserve. If the teacher is
focusing on the special needs students, the students who need a more
 Parents of other Children:
Research indicates that some parents of children who
attend services where there are children with special needs
enrolled held the view that “if children with disabilities were
deemed to be too different, too difficult or too disabled to
teach, or their participation in centres was seen as interfering
with the learning of other children, and as taking up time,
money or attention from the deserving ‘normal’ children, then
their enrolment, attendance and participation in early
childhood education should be questioned.” Such attitudes can
present a very significant deterrent to children with special
needs and their families’ sense of belonging and acceptance.
"Inclusive education is concerned with removing all barriers to
learning, and with the participation of all learners vulnerable
to exclusion and marginalization. It is a strategic approach
designed to facilitate learning success for all children. It
addresses the common goals of decreasing and overcoming all
exclusion from the human right to education, at least at the
elementary level, and enhancing access, participation and
learning success in quality basic education for all." – Susie
“Together We Learn Better: Inclusive Schools Benefit All
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