Inclusion: The Answer to... Nothing

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I'm in the middle of IEP season and all within 24 hours I'll be negotiating for 3 families: Family 1. Doesn't want any inclusion for their child.  We are negotiating for a private therapeutic day school. Family 2. Has had inclusion this year, but next year they are going to add in some pull out instruction for core subjects AND they've decided to repeat inclusion in the same grade level the child is in right now.  Kind of like repeating a grade with some tweaks. Family 3. Has full inclusion and will be negotiating to keep full inclusion, but needs improvement for inclusion to continue to be successful. So now... back to the point... Inclusion is the answer to nothing.  The real answer is individualizing a program to meet a child's needs.  You can't just want inclusion for your child for the sake of inclusion.  You need to want a program that fits your child's needs and then work with the team to design the program, which may or may not have inclusion. You can send me links about all of the research that shows that inclusion is right for everyone.  I'm not going to buy in.  Here's the reason why... I can send you research on why everyone needs to eat spinach, but if you hate spinach, you don't like how you feel when you eat spinach and you can get your green veggies from another source... spinach does not have to be the answer for you.  No matter how much research I send you, you will tell me how spinach isn't right for you and you KNOW this because you FEEL it.  It's your body. It's your feeling. It's what you know in your core. The same thing goes for inclusion.  Your child knows in their bones what is right for them.  They will thrive in the right environment for them.  Their body and mind doesn't care what the research says about what is right for everyone, they only know what is right for them. That's where you come in.  You are the expert on your child.  If your child can't tell you how they feel in their bones about their school system, chances are you can feel it for them.  You know.  You know deep in your heart what your child needs.  That is what you fight for.  You don't fight because the latest research is telling you what is best for your child. You fight for what you know in your bones because you can feel what your child feels. Inclusion is not the answer to finding your child the right learning environment.  Your child is the answer to finding the right learning place they need to thrive and grow and show their awesomeness to the world. Continue the conversation with Catherine here...

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  • Catherine Whitcher on

    Hi Cathie, Join me at the Special Needs Education Help Center. The center is an online place where I can help you and your grandson. You can enroll here:

  • Cathie Lindsey on

    How would I get an advocacy for my Grandson the school he attends is not helping him at all instead of encouragement to learn they want to take things from him and I know him that will not work I need help please.

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