Thomas Hehir, former director of the Office of Special Education Programs in the U.S. Department of Education and currently an EDC consultant, and Judith Zorfass, associate director of EDC’s Center for Family, School, and Community, discuss how changes in special education law and practice are transforming American schools.
EDC is searching the country for middle schools that feature “academic excellence, developmental responsiveness, and social equity.” Would some of those same schools also earn high marks for inclusive practices?
At the heart of Project ASSIST is the action reflection process, a carefully structured, time-limited discussion format that focuses on the work of three students chosen by their classroom teacher to represent the range of students in his or her class.
When Eleanore Grater Lewis began teaching, more than 40 years ago, it was very unusual to see a child with disabilities in a preschool classroom. “In those days, children with disabilities were largely excluded from any sort of preschool experience,” she explains. “Basically there were two options: Either they stayed home or they were institutionalized.”