"Special Ed Joins Mainstream"
November 18, 2002
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA--The following three paragraphs are excerpts from a Los Angeles Times article that ran in Thursday's Detroit News:
San Francisco began its (inclusion) program eight years ago, making it one of the first urban school systems in the nation to do so. The results have profoundly affected the district.
Many parents and school officials say San Francisco's changes, which are implemented in half the public schools there, give disabled children a chance to thrive. They have fewer limits placed upon them and have nondisabled children as behavior models. Even some parents of regular students say that their children are learning valuable lessons in compassion and tolerance.
At the same time, the transition has not been smooth. Some teachers and administrators resent having to work with disabled students. Special education teachers are scarce. A number of handicapped youngsters find it difficult to fit into regular classes -- sometimes they are neglected by teachers, or picked on by schoolmates. And a growing segment of educators say that the effort, known as "inclusion," is proving to be more expensive than having separate classrooms for the handicapped.
Special ed joins mainstream (Los Angeles Times via Detroit News)