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 Integration? 
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Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 7:56 am
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So in one of my other classes we're discussing integration of special needs students (anything from learning disabilities to mental retardation)into the regular classroom. How do you all feel about integration and what do you see as possible positives and negatives with having special needs children/adolescents in you classrooms?


Wed Apr 02, 2003 11:04 pm
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I think that integration into the regular classroom is very important and beneficial for both the disabled student as well as the "normal" student. My best friend's brother is labeled mentally retarded but to tell you the truth lots of times I think he knows what is going on more than we do! I cant' remember what his condition is called but it is basically "water on the brain" - Jennie Ingram is special ed- I'm sure she knows the name of it. Anyway, maybe I'm just biased but I feel Jeremy's condition is more physical than mental. It burns me up when people think just because someone is physically disabled that they are mentally disabled as well! -My father had polio so people in school thought he must be stupid! What!? I think that integrating will help the regular classroom realize that there is nothing wrong with the disabled child. We should also as teachers show our disabled students that we do have expectations for them. I know that Jeremy could have done well in school if he would have been integrated and if he would have had expectations placed upon him. Everyone assumed that he would never hold a job or be able to function in society. Our system has failed jeremy, it failed my father and I'm sure it has failed countless children of various disabilities. Please love all of your children and treat them with respect.


Thu Apr 03, 2003 8:23 am
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I agree that integration is good for all children, regardless of label. However, for children with special needs, it is the amount of integration that should vary from child to child. When I worked with an autistic class, the teachers let the children play on the playground one day with another regular ed classroom. The upper level autistic class (grades 3-5) ate lunch in the cafeteria everyday. Going to an assembly and sitting with regular ed students was also a big deal. A few of the students sang in chorus. Only a few of these students actually got a chance to go into a regular ed classroom, but all of the children got the chance to mainstream socially with regular ed children at some point. In my regular ed classroom, I think that my students would learn a lot from seeing differently abled children to know that all children are accepted. If anything, integration would help a regular ed child be more accepting of others, and like Kelli said, realize that there is nothing wrong disabled children.

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Julie Schmidt


Thu Apr 03, 2003 9:32 am
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I agree that integration is great for all students. I also feel that it is important that there is extra help for students with disabilities. If it was a world where money was not an issue it would be great to have a special ed teacher in every cloassroom. Inclusion could happen all the time and it would be great for the regular classroom teacher and the special ed teacher to learn from each other. Each student has his own individual needs and if a teacher is able to spend one on one time with students it will be great for teachers and students alike.

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Caryann Barton


Fri Apr 04, 2003 8:47 pm
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