Category Archives for "Human Rights and Advocacy"

Sep 15 2018

Inclusion: An Enshrined Human Right

INCLUSION: AN ENSHRINED HUMAN RIGHTThis short video is a part of a project supported by Down syndrome organisations around the world, as well as other inclusive education groups. It's less than three minutes long, and is beautifully produced.Inclusion in education (and the rest of life!) is close to my heart, and this short video spells out why.I understand why people choose segregated education settings, sometimes mainstream settings are simply not well supported, without specialist staff, large loud classrooms, poor resources, or teacher training, or the will to learn. But the best way for us to move forward as a society, is to *start* with inclusion.Here's what the https://www.includeusfromthestart.com/ website says: A Fully Inclusive Learning EnvironmentA system in which every student, regardless of disability or difference, is welcomed and supported in regular classrooms and where all students learn together and reach their full potential – academically, socially and emotionally. A place that respects and values diversity and prepares all students to be members of the rich communities in which they will work and live. That is the world of school to which all students, including students with Down syndrome and other disabilities, are entitled, as they prepare to be part of the world beyond it.When children are included from the start, they are given the best opportunity to develop mutual respect and understanding and the skills they need to live together in today’s diverse communities.But around the world, many children with Down syndrome and other disabilities continue to be excluded from regular classrooms, denied access to an inclusive education and diverted into an alternate separate “special” life-path with life-long consequences. Many countries still deny or limit the right of students with Down syndrome and other disabilities to be educated in regular classrooms. Or they allow students with disabilities to attend mainstream schools, but do not provide appropriate staff training, educational resources, curriculum adjustments and supports to genuinely welcome and accommodate them in regular classrooms. Even in Italy, which closed its separate “special” schools in the 1970s, the strong regulatory framework is not enough to guarantee an inclusive education for students with Down syndrome and other disabilities.Inclusive education is a fundamental human right of every child and it is backed by over 40 years of research evidence that overwhelmingly establishes better academic and social outcomes in general education school classrooms compared to separate “special” classrooms. It’s time to remove the barriers to inclusive education, challenge long-standing misconceptions about the potential of students with Down syndrome to thrive in inclusive classrooms and build a world – starting with the introductory and formative world to life – our schools – that responds to the diverse needs of all children and welcomes and includes every child for the individual that they are."

Posted by The Growing Space on Friday, 23 March 2018

INCLUSION: AN ENSHRINED HUMAN RIGHT

This short video is a part of a project supported by Down syndrome organisations around the world, as well as other inclusive education groups. It’s less than three minutes long, and is beautifully produced.
Inclusion in education (and the rest of life!) is close to my heart, and this short video spells out why.
I understand why people choose segregated education settings, sometimes mainstream settings are simply not well supported, without specialist staff, large loud classrooms, poor resources, or teacher training, or the will to learn. But the best way for us to move forward as a society, is to *start* with inclusion.
Here’s what the https://www.includeusfromthestart.com/ website says: 

A Fully Inclusive Learning Environment
A system in which every student, regardless of disability or difference, is welcomed and supported in regular classrooms and where all students learn together and reach their full potential – academically, socially and emotionally. A place that respects and values diversity and prepares all students to be members of the rich communities in which they will work and live. That is the world of school to which all students, including students with Down syndrome and other disabilities, are entitled, as they prepare to be part of the world beyond it. 

When children are included from the start, they are given the best opportunity to develop mutual respect and understanding and the skills they need to live together in today’s diverse communities. 

But around the world, many children with Down syndrome and other disabilities continue to be excluded from regular classrooms, denied access to an inclusive education and diverted into an alternate separate “special” life-path with life-long consequences. 

Many countries still deny or limit the right of students with Down syndrome and other disabilities to be educated in regular classrooms. Or they allow students with disabilities to attend mainstream schools, but do not provide appropriate staff training, educational resources, curriculum adjustments and supports to genuinely welcome and accommodate them in regular classrooms. Even in Italy, which closed its separate “special” schools in the 1970s, the strong regulatory framework is not enough to guarantee an inclusive education for students with Down syndrome and other disabilities. 

Inclusive education is a fundamental human right of every child and it is backed by over 40 years of research evidence that overwhelmingly establishes better academic and social outcomes in general education school classrooms compared to separate “special” classrooms. 

It’s time to remove the barriers to inclusive education, challenge long-standing misconceptions about the potential of students with Down syndrome to thrive in inclusive classrooms and build a world – starting with the introductory and formative world to life – our schools – that responds to the diverse needs of all children and welcomes and includes every child for the individual that they are.” 

copyright The Growing Space 2018 

March 23 2018

Feb 21 2018

Ableism: What is that??

Ableism and What it Means

November 19, 2017

An easy way to understand a basic perspective of Ableist language and Ableism.If someone lets you know you have said or written something “ableist”, think of exactly what you said or wrote, and replace the disability mention with “black person” or “gay person” and that might help understand why it is offensive.This is by no means anything close to explaining ableism in full, but hopefully it will be a conversation starter and get you thinking if you haven’t known about this before.

Here are just a few examples:

“Disabled students are a disruption in our school, they should be in special schools”or”I felt like such an idiot when I got lost at the park”or”He drank so much he was bloody paralytic and fell to the floor”or”That Downsey guy is sooo cute” (said as if the adult is an infant)orWhy shouldn’t disabled people at the ADE (formerly known as sheltered workshops) have different toilets to the “regular” staff – they’re so much dirtier.or “We should be able to sterilise woman with disability so they can’t get pregnant”or”I could never raise a disabled child – you’re amazing”or”Look at you – in a wheelchair on a bus – you’re inspirational”

There are millions more ways we are ableist, and often disabled people are ableist too as it’s been hammered in to them all their lives.

We’re always learning about ableism at The Growing Space. We have much to learn and we’re forever grateful to our Advisory Group of mentors with disability, young and old, who patiently and impatiently, help us learn.

Ableism

(Pic description: Two blue circles with white textThe circle to the left has a title “What Ableism is” followed by “A set of taught practices and subconscious or conscious behaviour against people with disabilities and illnesses which assumes that able is the norm, and people who have disabilities must either strive to fit that norm or keep their distance from people who are able. Ableism often sees disability as an error of life, a wrong way to live, and therefore often negates any life experiences of the disabled”.

The blue circle on the right has a title “What people think ableism is” followed by the text “My feelings are hurt because you used the r-word.”)