It's time to think about Inclusion + IEPs differently to help students receive an appropriate education that truly prepares them for further education, employment, and independent living.
1. Inclusion is an experience, not a place.
2. Inclusion should be centered on strengths & reflect the real world.
3. Inclusion needs to be a written plan inside of the IEP Ready for more?
Ask Catherine questions & grab a free IEP Checklist at www.catherinewhitcher.com
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Inclusive experiences between special education and general education students within Generation Z are going to need more support for all students than ever before. Use this new perspective to build inclusive experiences that are successful for everyone involved.
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This season of celebration in school can lead to more children feeling isolated, lonely and left out.
Let's make sure that your child or students don't feel this way!
Ask yourself these questions and then get creative in planning an inclusive experience for everyone... this is the best gift you can give a child. A feeling of belonging, for exactly who they are.
I don't have many negative experience as a special needs sibling, but seeing my brother...
We're going to talk today about three different things that you can do to avoid the trap of having students earn inclusion. We really do not want to approach inclusion from the standpoint of earning inclusion. If inclusion has to be earned it really starts to give a feeling not just for the student, but for the entire student body, that inclusion is something that you earn to be with the good kids. And if you don't earn inclusion, you go to the special education room, as if that's a bad thing.
Now that's not the intention of the IEP team of the teachers, or the staff, or the team, but it's what the feeling is and that's really what inclusion is... Inclusion is a feeling. Now we've all felt excluded from activities, right? You as a parent, as a teacher, as an adult, you have felt excluded from a party or a community event or maybe a workshop that you're attending. You know what that feels like?
Let's really work on creating inclusive experiences on...
It's that time of year again! Too many parents are going to be posting on FB how their child was NOT included in the holiday celebrations at school this year.
Many parents will not even post about it. They will keep it to themselves and push down the feelings of being excluded.
Here's the real deal - 99.99999% of the time, this does not happen on purpose.
Teachers and special education teams are working hard just to hold it together through the chaos of December in school and organizing the supports needed for ALL students to participate in holiday celebrations gets forgotten.
This doesn't mean it's right. It's just the reality.
Good thing there's an easy solution!
Start the conversation, TODAY, with your child's team on how your child can be part of the school community through holiday celebrations.
Make sure the team knows you aren't asking for your child to be plopped on the end of the choir riser to pretend to sing jingle bells. Let them know you are open to creative solutions...
A few months ago I was speaking at a local Down syndrome organization's monthly meeting and they gave away copies of this book! I've fallen in love with the simple message, the bright colors and the modern day "differences" that we are seeing in ALL families.
So often parents and teachers are looking for books that teach inclusion in an easy way through real life examples... this book does just that!
Special Education Parents and Teachers... We simply can't know where we are going with confidence if we don't start using the Parent Input statement effectively.
As a former special education teacher, I know first hand that this section is often glanced over. Yes, it's filled out. Yes, parent concerns are summarized. However, it's definitely not given the time and attention it needs considering what a critical change it can make in the IEP process.
Being a special needs sibling I watched my mom struggle to have her voice heard. She never gave up, but honestly, she didn't always take a diplomatic approach. (I totally get WHY, but if I can help a parent avoid that level of frustration, I will!)
It's time to take the BOLD IEP APPROACH and make the parents voice a significant driver in the IEP process.
Each and every Parent Input statement should include the parent's concerns and desired...
If you sit at an IEP table, this checklist is for you! Parents, teachers, therapists and support team members... you can all use this tool for your next IEP meeting!