For as long as I live, I will advocate for and preach the gospel of Inclusive Education. In a country obviously riddled with poverty, systems blockages and layers and layers of administrative bureaucracy with apparent difficulty in adjusting to new or innovative ideas, Inclusive Education has within it the potential to clean and rebuild from any country from bottom up.
What is the promise of Inclusive Education?
Inclusive education brings all students together in one classroom and community, regardless of their strengths or weaknesses in any area, and seeks to maximize the potential of all students.
Inclusion is an effort to make sure that diverse learners – those with disabilities, different languages and cultures, different homes and family lives, different interests and ways of learning – are exposed to teaching strategies that reach them as individual learners.
Inclusive schools ask teachers to provide appropriate individualized supports and services to all students without the stigmatization that comes with separation. Teachers in inclusive classrooms vary their styles to enhance learning for all students.
Inclusive education policies and programs can help mobilize communities and families to engage with children’s early educational development. All our school policies should embed inclusive education early within the school system.
A strong focus on inclusion in the early years can go a long way to ensure early detection and intervention in any area of human development. Play, early stimulation, self-help, and life skills need to be recognized as equally important as numeracy and literacy skills. These skills bridge the capacity gaps in all endeavours.
Inclusive education policies can help ensure that pre-service and in-service teacher training programs have inclusive education embedded throughout the teacher training curriculum.
During training, teachers are familiarized with the existence of support services for students with disabilities, and should be given plenty of opportunities for practical learning about inclusion.
And more….Cities, villages, homes, hospitals and public facilities (water, electricity, roads etc) will be redesigned to specification because citizens will see beneath fine lines.
The case for Inclusive Education simply cannot be overemphasized….speaks for itself. As soon as we see education through the eyes of Inclusiveness, every phenomenon that casts aspersions on differences, divisions, and difficulties in achieving national unity, peace and development will disappear….seamlessly.
“Children who learn together, learn to live together.”