(Boulder’s efforts for inclusion)

As I read this article, I am concerned about the purpose of the move to more inclusion. What is that purpose? Let’s be very clear! It is to improve learning outcomes for ALL students in the schools–regular and special education, gifted and average, ‘at risk’ and all others.

I echo and strongly support the folks who focus the purpose of inclusion on improving teaching and learning for ALL students. I am very concerned about those who focus on inclusion as a ‘civil right.’ Instead, inclusion should be based on research and best practices–for what works, not just for having all sorts of learners in classrooms together, but on improving outcomes for all of them. That is not a matter of ‘right,’ it’s a matter of pedagogy and research on what works.

Let us all keep our eye on the prize: better outcomes for all students.

About Miriam

Miriam Kurtzig Freedman, JD, MA—an expert in public education, focused on special education law— is a lawyer, author, speaker, consultant, and reformer. For more than 35 years, Miriam worked with educators, parents, policy makers, and citizens to translate complex legalese into plain English and focus on good practices for children. Now, she focuses her passion on reforming special education, with her new book, Special Education 2.0—Breaking Taboos to Build a NEW Education Law. Presentations include those at the AASA Conference, Orange County (CA), Boston College (MA), CADRE (OR), and the Fordham Institute (DC). Her writings have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Education Week, Education Next, Hoover Digest, The University of Chicago Law Review on line, DianeRavitch.net, and The Atlantic Monthly on line.

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