Surfer with asperger syndrome

This is an espn episode about a surfer with asperger syndrome.

Barriers to inclusion

Inclusion holds many pros and cons. The purpose of inclusion seems to be trying to put everyone on an equal playing field and feel welcome, but sometimes I wonder if it really does a good job doing so. While I think that there definitely needs to be wheelchair ramps (referring to ir a la escuela) available in all public places, I think that that sets a standard for creating all other equal public accesses.. such as bathrooms for transgenders and such. I think that inclusion is a positive thing for trying to include everyone, but at the same time I think it opens up the opportunity for putting people in a situation where they "stick-out" even more. For example, putting a child into a regular classroom as an attempt for inclusion puts the special education student in a situation where they are the minority, versus being in a special education classroom where they are one of many. Inclusion can take away from the special ed student who needs the special attention while also taking away from the regular student who loses attention due to the teacher needing to spend more time with the other student. But then again...what are we teaching our children if we do are constantly separating each other and putting labels?


I feel like there can definitely be pros and cons to inclusion. Like the film says, with inclusion, there is a higher expectation of kids/people, and they tend to then perform at a higher rate. Individuals can learn from others and really mesh well and function with the 'rest of society'. When there is complete inclusion, which I feel is best, the kids don't feel isolated like the ones in the film who were put in a special hallway that everyone avoided. Along with helping the people who might need extra services learn more, including them would absolutely benefit all the other students in the classroom as at least one child pointed out in the film. I know from personal experience being around many autistic kids/some adults on the ASD spectrum, that I am grateful to have been around them because I learn so much and learn to appreciate people in general for who they are. The only downside to inclusion can be when there really aren't enough services to fully include the child, because then it may be in the child/teacher's best interests to attend a different school/class. I guess just again from personal experience, inclusion can sometimes mean other kids who think they're so 'normal' are mean to the kids being included who might be different, but those kids need to learn that doing that isn't acceptable. I just have trouble seeing it/hearing about it i guess.

Inclusion (by Alyssa)

Inclusion can be a great thing. It helps develop social relationships, both for the child with the disability and the children in the regular class. We encounter different people every day; the blind man walking down the side walk, the girl in the back of the lecture hall sitting at the wheel chair accessible table. If we aren'€™t exposed to different people, we'€™re missing a big part of our society. Also, for those with a disability that inhibits social abilities or skills, being part of a community like a classroom can help build confidence and skill. The child can learn, through mistakes and example, what is "proper"€ and expected of a student in a classroom. Yes, it may be difficult, but making connections with kids his/her own age is important.

It also has its downfalls though. Especially when they'€™re younger, little kids freak out if someone gets something they don'€™t. If one child has a "€œspecial buddy"€ aid, and the rest don'€™t, it could cause conflict, isolating the disabled child even more. Also, it can be distracting to other kids if the disabled child'€™s aid is constantly talking or moving around, or if the child has tantrum or get overstimulated.

My mom is an aid for a child with Asperger's and he is included in regular classes. She says nothing but positive things about how he is developing social skills and emotional control. Based on that, which may be a bit biased, I think inclusion has more positive effects than negative.

Barriers to Inclusion

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It struck me as odd that even after the supposed inclusion of the students, they were still so effectively separated from the rest of the students. Those children whose parents did not argue to put their children with "normal" children were not. They were in the same building, yes, but in an isolated hallway away from the general student body population. There are limited handicap accessible entrances and bathrooms, and fewer opportunities for these students to interact with other students outside of their class. What is so frustrating is that these barriers are not constructed between the children on their own, but by the school's segregation. Those students who were integrated and treated by the adults as being almost the same as everyone else were also included at recess, and even greeted in the supermarket (in other words, accepted outside of the classroom as well). The students only had positive things to say about the experience (though perhaps a lot of these positives are a result of the film's bias), and the teachers seemed willing to try and accommodate the disabled students in their classrooms. It seems, then, that the major barrier lies with the administration and the unwillingness to change in order to accommodate students rather than with the general school population. I think one teacher said it best: you may not be able to meet the same goals as with "normal" children, but you can integrate them into society. The only barrier to that lies in the preexisting stigmas of society at large. 

Barriers to Inclusion in "Ir a la escuela"

In the movie "Ir a la escuela" there were many barriers to inclusion at the public school.  The school only had stairs at the main entrance, and had beautiful handicap accessible restrooms that they school did pay to maintain and have in working condition.  This seems, aside from being unfair and insensitive to large population of handicapped and disable students at the school, very pointless, especially in the case of the restrooms.  Why even pay to have handicap accessible restrooms installed in the first place if they are never going to be used? Another major barrier to that school was lots of the individuals higher up in the school system, who made IEP's very hard to figure out and difficult to schedule.  Another major barrier is the fact that many of the parents and guardians who sent their children to the school didn't speak English.  This made communication very hard between individuals who worked for the school and parents and caretakers.  Thankfully, and luckily enough for parents and teachers in the area, offices were established to help solely with these problems.  This was one barrier that people in that school system seemed to be working especially hard on, both with higher officials in the program as well as with parents and community members.  People who work in the IEP office take lots of time to clearly explain what to expect and how to act, as well as what questions to ask to get needs met during the IEP.  Improvements such as this will help not only the students involved, but the parents and the teachers as well.  

Barriers to Inclusion

Through the movie "Ir a la esceula" and the Berube readings many arguments for and against inclusion were mentioned. My first thoughts on Inclusion are there is no way that a person can ever be completely included. In my last blog entry on normalcy I stated roughly the same idea. There is this ideal human being that is perceived to be perfect, but I highly doubt there is a single human being on the face of the earth who is absolutely perfect. Whether there is an emotional, physical, or mental issue underlying in each individual, everyone has something in there life they wish could be better, at least I imagine so. In the film, one of the first ideas presented was that children go to regular schools, but are separated into "bungalows." There is a constant negotiation to whether children with disabilities should be included in a regular classroom setting and I believe they should. There is evidence that shows when a child is working and learning among other children who help them adapt to the "normal setting" shows improvement at school and at home. This is much more beneficial in my opinion they placing them in a classroom where they are with the same people who push them to be better everyday, where in a regular classroom there are 20 or so people who can be influential. I understand where parents of so called, "regular children" are coming from when they state that these special needs children may disrupt their child's speed of learning, but there is many other environmentally influenced distractions that could do the same thing. Whether it be the way the teacher teaches the material or a child who decides drawing on his desk is more important and the teacher must stop the whole class to make sure he is paying attention. When it comes to determining whether a child should be included or not, Berube creates a significant argument when he says that American Conservatives complain that "inclusion saps resources from "normal" and "gifted" students." He then later comes back to argue that disabled kids are not limited from getting help from one resource, they need many for the best improvement. They may have a teacher who works with them during certain parts of the day, but that one person can't teach them everything they need to know. At the end of the film we watched in class the quote. "Your dreams can be realized, set your goals, and achieve what you want in your future,"  was stated. This overall sums up my feelings about inclusion because I feel it suggests that every person needs to do what they need to help them develop in the best way possible, disabled or not.

Barriers to Inclusion

In the video we watched there were many different barriers that prevented inclusion. Although the atypical children were aloud to go to school with the regular children, there were many different factors that still prevented them from going to certain schools and from being included in the school that they went to. The atypical children were able to go to regular schools and take classes that the regular kids did but they were still separated from the regular kids because they were only allowed to take a few classes with them. This caused a separation between the atypical children and the regular children because the regular children did not get to experience having a regular schedule with the atypical children. Most parents who have atypical children do not know the rights they have and they do not know how to get the help they need. This causes many problems for the parents because for the ones who want their children to participate in schools with regular children if they don't know where to get the help they need it would be hard for them to to get their children into regular schools. Although there were many different barriers the video we watched showed us that it is possible for the atypical children to go to regular schools with regular children and be able to do just as well as the regular children.

Barriers to Inclusion

The film Ir a la Escuela looked at several issues surrounding inclusion of disabled children in regular school programs.  These issues included accessibility of school buildings, acceptance of disabled children by the parents of non disabled kids, language barriers encountered by parents of disabled children, and inability of schools to adapt to disabled children.  The film had a heavy bias toward inclusion.  I think that the main barrier to full inclusion was the school's administration.  They had been asked for more wheelchair-accessible entrances, and yet were hesitant to change anything.  Stereotypes were also a big hindrance to inclusion.  Parents of non disabled kids did not want disabled kids in the classroom because they might distract their own kids.  However, many kids in the inclusion classroom were not distracted.  They were actually more used to diversity than their parents.  These are strong reasons for inclusion.  If we include the disabled kids, it is a benefit to all of the children.  The non disabled kids are exposed to diversity and the disabled kids get a quality education.   

arguments for and against inclusion

Although I feel inclusion is a wonderful thing, there are some arguments against it. Some of the arguments against inclusion that weren't necessarily said by the movie, but I thought were implied, were hindering the learning of the "normal" students in the class and causing an unnecessary disruption. These may seem like significant reasons to some but when looking at the pros of inclusion there are so many more than the cons. Having a student in class who isn't like everyone else can be a good learning experience for all of the "normal" children in class. By being exposed to people with a disability it can make the children who aren't used to being around someone who isn't "normal" like them more comfortable around them. Also, by not thinking about what these children who are disabled can't do, inclusion makes it possible to see what they CAN do. Not only can they grow socially, they can also be pushed to make more progress than they would in a separate class room. Overall inclusion is a great thing and maybe if more people were informed as to why, it wouldn't be so controversial.

Recent Comments

  • Back when I went to school, all of the handicapped read more
  • Caitlin Olson: Inclusion is a positive and beneficial experience for everyone that read more
  • Katie Anderson: I agree that it is important to have a "normal" read more
  • Caitlin G: I think I stand by what I said before but read more
  • Alyssa Merbler: After talking about it in class, i'm even more uncertain read more
  • Caitlin Olson: After discussing the requirements that one must have to be read more
  • Eric Bressler: To me normal still remains as a subjective quality. It read more
  • Caitlin Olson: Normal can be defined as someone that fits into the read more
  • Aylix Witz: Normal is a word that is defined differently to everyone. read more
  • Ruskin: I posted a copy of the article from Pediatrics to read more

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