The other thing that will come up now and then on here is things to do with my job which is a speech therapist. I work in mainstream and special schools and it is pretty interesting. The thing I have found is that parents sometimes have no idea what to look for in a school. I think someone (me?) should publish a guide with suggestions. Not that everyone should look for the same thing, but they should know how to identify what it is they want. Also I don’t think parents know how good it is to have children with significant needs in the same class as their child. There is no way they could know I think. After all you would think it would mean that their child would get less support.
What I think really happens (or can happen at least) in a school where there is every kind of child, is that the school looks at the children as individuals so they can support the child’s whole development, not just academic progress. It helps them recognise the good things children can do which maybe aren’t measured by tests. So not only do they recognise skills in children with special needs, they can recognise important skills in all the children. Like learning to be fair and kind and thoughtful and considerate. All the things that make you a good person to know and to live with… That’s not to say children with special needs can’t also suceed academically, just that you begin to realise that’s a small part of what helps a child to be the best person they can be in every way.
I don’t suppose I will ever write such a document, but I think it’s really good to think about what actually matters for a child and how you can spot those things in a school. And maybe if parents stop thinking that children with special needs will deprvie their own child of support then staff at schools won’t feel that way either.
Sorry, this is probably a really boring entry but I still think it’s interesting!