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Check out these posts about inclusion in the regular education classroom. Different from 'mainstreaming' inclusion usually involves the special education teacher co teaching with the regular education teacher.
inclusion class make-up
Posted by:Darlene #92100

I teach 1st grade inclusion. Here is what we do. We try and max out our inclusion classes at 18. Each inclusion room has a general education teacher and a special education teacher. Regular classes try and max out at 21 or 23. I am the special ecucation teacher and have two inclusion rooms.

The first calssroom has 18 students. 3 are inclusion students, meaning they have academic goals on thier IEPs. 1 resource room student and a student on a 504 plan. There are also 3 students that recieve speech services.

The other classroom has 19 students. 4 are inclusion students. 5 recieve ESL daily. 1 recieves speech and another 1 recieves OT.

I push-in to each classroom for 1 hour-1 hour and a half daily. I pull-out my inclusion and resource room student for 2 hours and 45 minutes. Pull-out decisions are made been the regular ed teacher and myself. I've just started to leave one of my inclusion...

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Posted by:Gina TX #129676

I have two very high needs inclusion classes this year. I teach 6th grade Science and Social Studies. I have three blocks of Science. One has no inclusion, we get to do lots of fun things. The other two....I think are unfair to the students that are not specail needs that are in there. To be fair, some of my inclusion kids are pretty high performing, but some are so low that it brings down the rest of my class. It has to. I haven't found a way around it. I have an inclusion teacher that comes in and helps, one block I have 8 inclusion kids and the other has 12. Some of these need one on one attention. That's not possible when there is twelve and what about the other 15-16 kids in the class. They are really missing out. I had a meeting about...

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Posted by:pat #49945

First of all let me state up front I am not a supporter of inclusion. I feel we are doing a diservice to the special needs child and the reg. classroom by requiring these students to be taught in the same setting. I probably could go one for hours but will try to stick to the survey.
1. Self contained second grade. I've been in this position for eight years. Four years in a strictly special ed environment and 7 years at various grade levels in regular classrooms
2. My undergrad degree is in elem. and special education. My master's program was in elementary education. This particular program focused on many of the school reforms that are presently taking place in education with a heavy emphasis on inclusion. The district I am currently working for has provided a number of profesional development classes on inclusion/how to handle at-risk students/adapting in the classroom etc....
I feel...

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Posted by:Jessica #46047

By law, if you have an inclusion class there will be a special ed teacher in there and not just an assistant. It is vital that you work out a good relationship with that person. I am a special ed teacher myself but some of us feel that inclusion is a chance for us to do our planning, or just sit back and relax. The best thing you can do is to plan with your co-teacher. This way you'll always be on the same page. Inclusion students are usually very high functioning and sometimes you won't even be able to tell them from the other students. In some cases I have taken a few of the lowest kids, both spec and not, to the side and worked with them while the teacher did her lesson. You can pair a spec ed kid up with one of your higher regular students. Some of the modifications for...

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Posted by:Pam #34399

Inclusion is beneficial to the students in learning proper social skills. I feel it does give them the opportunity to see appropriate behaviors and in some instances self esteem that is much needed. However there is a turned side to inclusion I spent two years in a H.S. situation and it was very frustrating. I thought it would be a great opportunity for myself to team teach and help to integrate Mildly disabled teens (LD) into a regular ed setting. First off it was a situation set up for failure - most of my regular ed collegues teach 1 - 2 subjects a day, I was responsible for keeping up with curriculum of a World Cultures Class, Government, U.S. History and also had to teach a self contained English class and Math class Oh! and I had to go into a Freshman Career English class. It...

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Posted by:Debbie #79519

Do you have paras to help? I'm in charge of inclusion at our K-2 school. This year we are using my para and "borrowing" other SPED paras to work as part-day or all-day assistants in the regular ed classes where we have "podded" our inclusion students. That's the only way we can serve everyone. I will float all day this year between all of the classes. I'm tired already just thinking about it! Some of the problems I face are (1)I have several multi-disability students who need extra, extra help; (2)a couple of our sped paras are lazy and don't want to work, but nothing is done about it; (3)a lot of our reg ed teachers think "those" children (even LD) should be in self-contained classes; and(4)students are constantly added to my roster all year long for service and not assigned to one of our "podded" classes, making my job almost...

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Posted by:Sarah #38429

I disaggree with the above responses about inclusion. It can be wonderful. I taught Special Needs Kindergarten for seveal years. I team taught with an amaizing regular Kinderagarten teacher. Our classrooms were adjacent to each other and the children flowed between each room. At times, both classes were in the same room. Our class size varied each year. She started with about 22 full time students and I had approx. 8 special needs students. All the students (even my lower funcitoning children) participated in inclusion at some time during the day and typically the amount of time increased over the year. The amount of time the students with special needs were inculded depended on their individaul needs and abilities. Both class ate lunch, playground, specials (lunch and music and sometimes pe) together each day. In addition, developmental center time was done together. Chilren rotated thorugh weekly centers...

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Posted by:teachinwright #125931

THis is my 5th year doing inclusion. My class is normally "more" full than others but half the day I have help from the SPED teacher. The other half of the day about four of my kids are pulled for a couple hours into a SPED room, so this reduced my class size. The first couple of years I felt abused as they stacked my class with either gifted or sped students. I had to have two sets of lesson plans for everything! The inclusion teachers revolted and they made a change so that it would be more evenly divided up. The admin never let me go over my official limit (28)in my homeroom, but if a student from another class needed sped services throughout the year they were pulled into my room which at one point had me at 32 kids for a couple of classes! Yes it was frustrating and...

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Posted by:Joan #48358

While inclusion seems pretty frightening to most of us, it is not always a negative experience. When done properly, many studies show the results to be dramatic. My close friend's child is autistic and was fully included beginning in the fourth grade. He was assigned a full time assistant. He was an ideal candidate as he is not violent and he has promising abilities in some subject areas. My friend was very nervous about taking this step, but the results were amazing. He grew almost three years in math and over a year and a half in reading in only one school year!!! Also, the students in his class learned a lot from having him in there. I am sure that students who have shared a class with Jason are a bit more compassionate, understanding, and informed (and possibly have a better sense of humor).

The word inclusion has a bad...

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loved inclusion
Posted by:Tatum #125772

I had inclusion three times in my 9 yrs. of teaching. I taught a fifth inclusion and two 4th inclusion classes. I had the sped teacher all day. I liked teaching with a partner. We planned together, bought supplies together(great to spilt costs that can add up), and taught lessons together some of the time. I usally started planning the whole class lessons and when we got together to plan she would plan how to modify, assist and differentiate for the ieps. Most of the time she had her iep kids and I had my reg kids but I loved how we combined everyone together for some whole group lessons and afterwards she and I would pull smaller groups to work with. MOST days we had a blast teaching together.

Somtimes it got tough when we disagreed on how to teach a lesson, when that happened...

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Posted by:Jan #38774

Here I go again, but I am not a big fan of inclusion. It must be done correctly for it to work and I haven't seen a district do it well yet. I have been in education for 27 years. Inclusion is only for those students who need it and can handle it. It must be appropriate to the students in inclusion. If they are putting all the special kids and sticking you in and calling it inclusion it is wrong. Only those students that can truly benefit by it should be there. Inclusion is not for every student. It is a service to be considered when developing and IEP in terms of one of the things offered on the continium spectrum. Ask questions, get a job description, find out about your kids and plan with your co-teacher and if you are certified make sure she agrees that you...

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mainstreaming vs Inclusion
Posted by:Patti #74743

I was identified in the 3rd grade as having a LD. I struggled all the way through school, getting some academic support in a variety of settings, self-contained class, resource rooms, LD school and mainstreaming in HS.
I agree that there are many problems with inclusion...forget the artifical environment, it is really hard on the kid, the teacher and the rest of the class. The kid is struggling to stay caught up and becomes frustrated and may begin acting out. The teacher spends any spare time modifying assignments because the SPED teacher is too busy, the class suffers because in spite of the teacher's best effort instruction slows down. What is the answer? I'm not sure. But Inclusion was introduced as a way to get the higher functioning SPED students back into regular classes. Now it is a cost cutting way to comfort ourselves by telling ourselves that...

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Resource -- Inclusion
Posted by:Amy #97376

I am a general education 4th grade language arts teacher. I am somewhat different in that I have a Masters in special education. I wanted to work in a general education classroom, so that I could be an advocate for children with disabilties. I am blessed because my school has chosen to go to complete inclusion for children who have learning disabilities. Not all children are fully included. Our children with more severe mental disabilities are in a separate classroom with inclusion in my classroom for morning time, p.e./music, lunch and recess.

I wanted to share with you that the progress this year with my children with disabilites has been amazing. Self-esteem is up and they are trying harder. Our special education teacher comes in and works with all my students, not just the children with disabilties. We plan together, look at IEP's...

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Posted by:Janet #12780

I've been doing inclusion on the middle school level in Connecticut for the past 5 years. There really are no formal guidelines. It is up to the individual needs of the students. It helps to think of it being on a continuum ranging from full inclusion with minor modifications to inclusion with modifications and direct special ed. support in the classroom, either by a teacher or trained paraprofessional. The sites where students are serviced should remain flexible with pull-out to the resource room whenever necessary. The use of alternative materials on lower reading levels is also helpful as long as it parallels what is being done in the mainstream. I'd be glad to answer any direct questions or offer advice if you e-mail me. I have written my own set of general guidelines for inclusion as well as guidelines for good co-teaching practices. I can also provide you...

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Posted by:linda2671 #129722

As the mom of an autistic daughter, inclusion meant that many years, my daughter was put in a classroom where she was not wanted and where her needs were not met. Her kindergarten teacher actually made her put her head under a bookshelf at naptime so she wouldn't "bother" any other kids. (I didn't know about this until years later.) The kids made fun of her, the teachers didn't want her, and she didn't learn anything in the regular classroom.
As a first grade teacher, I am the one who usually gets the inclusion kids in my class. Why? Because I care about them. I teach the other kids to believe that they are the disabled child's teachers. They are in the room to learn from the kids more than they are in the room to learn from me. My students learn to appreciate...

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Posted by:Sandy #66536

Personally I have never seen a model really work but this year I started doing reverse inclusion inviting students from the regular class to my class and it works so well. They get to interact with my children and work with my kids and my students are not "left out". The reason why I say I never saw it work - so many times my kids are left aside because it isn't properly put into place. Regular teachers and special education teacher rarely have the collaborative time to make it work. Nice on paper but in reality... When you are a special education teacher teaching several grade levels in 1 room it is hard to meet the needs in each individual classroom even having assistants to support. Having these students come into my room has made it easier to make it work they come in for projects in my room and...

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Posted by:spec. ed md. #80547

My district is also doing inclusion. They are training our school this year, however we have been doing inclusion for a few years now. The hardest part for me is the negativity of some teachers who believe these kids should be in r/r all the time. Also, I am in Primary Spec. ed. so if we get new kids that qualify, I may have to service them and they are not in the classes I already work with. Last year, in Jan. we had two first graders qualify and they were in diff. rooms. I ended up working with 5 different teachers. Some days, I would just kind of wing it when I went into the classrooms, because, I physically could not plan with everyone all the time.

There are a few ways you could work planning together. The reg. ed. teacher could give you...

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Posted by:Michelle #52773

What exactly are you doing during class? Are you making the modified materials during instructional time? If so, that is a problem. I'm sure that your regular ed partners would love to be doing some planning, grading, etc. during class time too. We all take work home. Theirs is different, but they do a lot of outside work as well. If you are supporting individual students, doing small group instruction, etc., the regular ed teachers should not have a problem with this.

Consider trying the whole group instruction. When I did inclusion, I used whole group for two purposes. First, I modeled effective teaching and behavior management strategies for my teaching partners. As they became more efficient at instructing the students with disabilities I needed fewer and fewer modified materials. Additionally, the typical students who were struggling...

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Posted by:Melissa #12337


I, too, am a new teacher, but during my recent student teaching experience, I had 8 inclusion students, with exceptionalities ranging from learning to behavioral. The most important thing for you to remember when managing and teaching an inclusion classroom is to INCLUDE (just like it sounds) all students in all activities. You do this by making modifications when needed. I found that with a lot of my lessons, the students, especially those with attention problems, just neede something legitimate to do that was part of the lesson. I tried to make my lessons as interactive as possible so that my easily distracted students would be engaged. To manage other difficulties, such as students who were constantly out of their seats during the lesson, I gave them something legitimate to do, such as help me hold up a poster or a book. This kept their...

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2nd grade inclusion
Posted by:coach #91518

How much planning time are you getting with the classroom teachers?
I have a second grade inclusion class and our ese support teacher comes in 45 minutes in the am for reading and 45 minutes in the pm for math. We plan together whole group and small group activities. Often we share working with the students so that the students don't know she is there for just a few of them. It almost seems like you are doing ese resource pullout in the same room- kinda defeats the purpose of inclusion.

I like the provious post of giving some students independent activities to work on so you can work with 1 or 2 at a time. This may help some of the behavior problems. Some of the behavior may be tied to the fact that these students feel like they are not working at the same level as everyone else. On top...

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Posted by:special ed. teacher #83022

I teach inclusion all day long. In my case, the teacher that I work with switches off teaching duties with me- every other class period or every other unit lesson. As the special ed. teacher, I would be responsible for accomodations for the special needs students in my classes, and it is my responsibility to know their IEPs. However, I feel equally responsible for all of the other students in my classes, too. The other teacher and I do not draw any distictions between ourselves- the students don't know that she is a 'regular' teacher and I'm a 'special ed.'
teacher. This is important to their self-esteem, in my opinion. We share grading duties.
As for lesson plans, we've decided to write one set of plans, and both of us are turning them in to administration. It just seems silly to both write them, when we...

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This is why inclusion is sooo great!
Posted by:Christina #12649

The situation presented by "Anonymous" here is one of the key reasons why I just LOVE inclusion. It's not for every special ed. student. This I know from working with my self contained learning disabled student body of 15 4th and 5th graders. Before I started this, I was a "regular" ed. teacher who happened to fall into the good fortune of having an inclusion math and reading class. The sped teacher was phenomenal. By working together we met(hopefully!) the needs of ALL the students. Believe me - there were more kids in the class that needed support than just those with IEPs. My current school does not have the inclusion model. Hopefully it will be in place by the end of next year, when I'll receive tenure. I'm looking forward to working with another teacher who I can learn from and create positive learning experience with in the...

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Posted by:sandyH #63507

I have to put in my 2cents' worth...I have 9 out of 23 students in my homeroom who are on IEPs. They are all included to different degrees. Some are pulled out for subjects as needed. My personal take on inclusion is that it has to be driven by the needs of the individual children. There is not a "one size fits all" solution to inclusion. Two of my students are functioning at such a basic level that they really would benefit from more functional skills rather than participating in science, social studies, grammar, etc. instucted on grade level with modifications. Unfortunately, we are not sufficiently staffed to allow for pull outs during those times. To boil it down, inclusion (on a case by case basis) with sufficient support is the way education should be. Inclusion for all with insufficient support is criminal.

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Posted by:Jan #48073

I am a special education teacher and have regular certification as well. Inclusion is awful. I hate it and most teachers hate it. Does this child have and IEP? If so go to the special ed. teacher who is handling his case. Start documenting any, any misbehavior on his account. I know your hands are full but it can save your butt when and if the time comes and something happens. Just take 15 minutes at the end of the day and write it down. Keep a journal on this child. On the weekends end type it up and send a copy to your principal. If he doesn't have an IEP it can help you get him one. To place a BD child you have to have documentation of his harmful behavior. It will also help you remember specific events and details if you go to an IEP meeting. Many people think they...

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mainstreaming and inclusion
Posted by:Carolyn #12608

I have experienced inclusion in several schools. However, we are not using inclusion in our school, possibly because of funding and the fact that our special ed teacher only comes to school in the afternoons.

I would love to have the opportunity to have a special education teacher within my classroom to help the two LD children I have. I think that on-the-spot individualized help with these kids would be beneficial as I am teaching the subject matter. As it is now, they are in resource for an hour in the afternoons. Because the teacher doesn't meet with them in my room, I have to maintain a constant contact with him concerning what I am teaching. Our pullout special ed program doesn't seem to be helping my kids complete anything at grade level; they can't complete grade level math and reading tasks,...

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Posted by:Pirate_Andi #125932

All our classes (regular and inclusion) are the same size. The inclusion class is just the class that has all the grade level sp ed students in the mix. The Sp Ed teacher/assistant comes into that particular classroom and works with ALL students being sure not to single out the sp ed students.

I have worked in an inclusion situation many times and in our system, it simply doesn't work. Until the Sp Ed department hires enough people to do the job won't work.

It's not that I have a bad attitude towards an ideal situation I think it would be wonderful...but when the Sp Ed teacher and assistant are doing inclucion with all grades 1-5 and we all have reading at the same time...duh, it doesn't take a rocket scienctist!!! lol

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Inclusion Teacher
Posted by:Sue #54747

That is not uncommon I was an inclusion teacher in a HS situation and literally given a stack of papers to grade for the reg. ed. teacher. None of my accomodations were ever good enough, I would make up study guides notes etc... and they were considered Watering down the curriculum. I had a STUDENT TEACHER treat me like less than a teacher - and this was allowed by the reg. teacher. Her excuse was "I was never taught anything about inclusion in college" WOW well excuse me I have been out of school for 15 years and I would think someone recently in school was learning about this concept???? I was actually excited to work with a student teacher and it was a big let down. It is hard and I personally think it was part my personality, other people seem to be happy in...

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Inclusion Ideas
Posted by:Kennedy #97184

I agree with the other responder that you'll need to look at this child's IEP in order to get specifics on what she needs as far as your class. However, you're looking for some ideas, and I hope I can offer a little help...

When doing vocabulary activities - this student might do some matching activities with the terms. I know that I have and do create matching, either picture-term or term-meaning, for inclusion students. Your special educator probably has access to unique processing software such as Writing with Symbols or Boardmaker, which he or she can use to create materials to go with your units.

To address word recognition and related objectives for this student, while also addressing your curriculum, you may have her cut letters out of magazines and arrange them to spell key terms in your unit. These can be...

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Posted by:Jenna #46661

Hi, I teach in a 4th grade inclusion class and coteach full time with at special ed teacher. It can be wonderful. This year we are looping from 3rd to 4th with our class. What we have found to be the best is for the teachers to plan together and to look at the class as "ours", not these are my reg. ed and your sp.ed. We have a variety of teaching models and take turns being the lead teacher and back up teacher. Our special ed students soared and did so much better than in other inclusion classes because they were not signaled out. We have some workshops on coteaching for inclusion because we love it so much. Please email me if you have any questions.
Have a great year!

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Posted by:Jan #27609

Inclusion is neither good or bad. Inclusion should only be considered for those students that it is appropriate for. Inclusion is badly mistaken as being for everyone. It isn't. It is a service to be offered along the continuium of special services. It should only be considered when it is appropriate to the educational, academic and emotional needs of that individual child. It is NOT for everyone. I teach self-contained and I have students always experience K but they for the most part can't handle the academics at all. I have never seen inclusion done appropriately with the staff and money and accomodations needed.


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Posted by:Julie #68022

I'm a first year teacher in sped, but have experience as a classroom teacher and can speak from both sides. I think inclusion is important for all students. Depending on the needs, inclusion can be beneficial because other students are modeling behavior, academics, etc. for the needs student. It allows them to experience social opportunities that are difficult to create in a resource room. We are noticing that in our district, students who are pulled out a lot during the day, are exhibiting more social anxieties. It is also good for the other students to learn how to work with people that have different needs than them, as they will have to work with people of all walks of life someday! A disadvantage, depending on the needs, can be that for the classroom teacher it can mean another lesson plan, making adaptations, training students how to work...

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inclusion making it work
Posted by:Kim #92331

I have been teaching 5th grade inclusion for 4 years. In my school district we have 10 students with an IEP and 15 students without and IEP. The key is that we have a regular ed teacher and a special ed teacher all day teaching together as a team in the same classroom. My principle is also very good about who he puts in the classroom for the reg ed students since we have no say about the IEP students. I am the special ed teacher and my students range from very low to high if they have ADD or ADHD. I also may have some behaviors. The reg ed kids are either 1 year below level, on level, and may be slightly higher. We try to get no behavior students for the reg ed students and try to pick good role models for the students that have an IEP and issues. This has...

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Posted by:Susan #63391

Inclusion without proper support is cruel and unusual punishment both ways. I love my self contained class and that is not a bad thing we get a lot accomplished without being disrupted because we have to let this one go here and that one go there to be included. It is so hard to keep track of and hard to plan for this year I have them for most of the day and it is GREAT!!! Recess goes so much smoother cause we are out there to take care of problems - lunch is much better we can teach these children proper ways to eat and manners etc... I like my class and work very hard - it doesn't make sense to force us into molds we do not fit in. Please understand that inclusion has a time and place and for some more severly handicapped children it is...

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Posted by:Doni #66571

Decisions about inclusion are decided at the IEP meeting by the student's IEP team which includes the regular edd. teacher, special edd. chair, special eed coordinator, parents, and any other interested parties. According to law, we are supposed to choose the least restrictive environment. At my school, we have no self-contained special education classes except for special edd. preschool. There are self contained Sp. Ed. classes in the district at other schools - mostly severe EBD, MOID, PID, and one self-contained Autistic class at one of the middle schools. My son was dx'd with Autism at the age of 3. He went to special ed preschool and has been fully included in refular ed since. They just did a re-eval on him and changed his label to Asperger's/CAPD.

My opinion is, that students with disabilities need to be included in the regular...

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Posted by:butterflylady #126362

I've done inclusion for the past several years. The #1 thing I have issues with is the sp ed teacher does not plan with me or is not responsible for grading anything. They don't even turn i lesson plans in our school! i've tried unsuccessfully so far to reason with the admin right now I feel like the sp ed teacehr is nothng more than an aide with a degree. she Never teaches the lesson and really doesn't know what I'm doing uintil she walks in the door! My ideal inclusion class would be a well planned by both teachers and a shared teaching model. I'm going to try again this year to insist on this-let's see how far I get!

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Posted by:roo #125945

I have had an inclusion class each year that I've taught. At my school, special needs students aren't counted any differently when considering class sizes (although we've tried to make an argument for it to the "powers that be"). So anyway, the inclusion homerooms are no smaller than the others. Unfortunately, our intervention specialists are spread very thin and often cannot be in the room with these students, when they are responsible for 4-6 homerooms, and some students who require pullout in certain areas. Also, we don't volunteer for an inclusion homeroom...we just know it's part of your teaching responsibilities.

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inclusion models
Posted by:Shirley #47775

You will find that there are many different ways the inclusion could work in your school. If there is a set policy, you should be able to find that out from someone who was involved last year (reg. ed or inclusion). Most of the time it depends on the individual teachers. I have been inclusion for the last 8 years. My days are always different. I did some whole group, some small group, some pull-out, etc. Most of the time I worked with individuals or small groups within the classroom. I did a lot of modification of materials.

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Posted by:bonpar #126003

In my school, the inclusion classes aren't smaller - but the special ed students are on the special ed teacher's roster. The regular teacher doesn't have to calculate grades for them. The special ed teacher and/or an aide is in the room for much of the day. Also, they get pulled out for standardized testing, and some other times too.

The inclusion teacher on my team last year had the same # of students as the rest of us, but she got the smallest, oddly shaped room! It used to be the teacher's lounge.

We are getting a lounge back this year and its going to be in a small room right across the hall from my classroom! THere will be a copy machine there! YAY!

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