LAUSD parents, teachers fight mainstreaming of disabled kids is an article in the Los Angeles Daily News. Here’s an excerpt:
Waving signs and chanting “Our kids, our choice,” scores of Los Angeles Unified parents and teachers protested the looming transfer of hundreds of disabled students from special-education centers to traditional schools, as the district complies with laws to integrate students who have physical and developmental challenges.
The protesters oppose the merger of four special-education centers with nearby traditional schools, a move that will affect about 300 disabled youngsters when school starts next month. Opponents of the plan say the district will be segregating rather than integrating their kids by putting them in unsafe situations and setting them up for teasing or bullying. They say they want it to be their choice, not the district’s, to transfer their kids to a traditional campus.
I have some mixed feelings about this issue. And, admittedly, I don’t have any knowledge of the details about what’s happening in Los Angeles.
However, we have a very large number of students with special needs at our large inner-city high school, and from everything I’ve seen and heard, it’s been an excellent situation for both the special needs and mainstream students. I have never seen, nor have I heard, of any special needs student being bullied or teased. In fact, I have seen countless instances of respect and courtesy paid to special needs students.
Again, though, I don’t know the LA details. If you have more info, or a different perspective, please share in the comments…