An Argument for Reforming the Special Education in United States
Education is undoubtedly one of the issues of first priority of any country in the world. Providing children with opportunity for becoming properly educated is the guarantee of country’s stable future as those, who are children today will govern the land and determine its faith tomorrow. As education, besides having its own theoretical and methodological body of scientific knowledge, exists on the crossing between many other disciplines and areas of activity. That list includes psychology, sociology, social work, management as scientific disciplines along with economy, policy making and many others areas of practical activity. Education and its practical aspects are already quite complicated in terms of implementation and scientific research, but there is even more perplexed area – education of children with disabilities. And this is the most problematic area of education nowadays, especially in United States of America. Unfortunately, special education for children with disabilities experiences a great measure of inequality in its present state. The reason of that inequality is not unique though and is represented by the omnipresent prejudice that plagues the American society. The modern state of special education in United State does not adhere to basic principles of inclusive education, which is the premise for the existence of the whole area. In this way, the system of special education as it exists in United States must be reformed in order to make it free of prejudice that currently has place there and is directed against the minorities of U. S. population.
The way current state of special education system of America is absolutely dissatisfactory in terms of adherence to the standards imposed by the idea of inclusive education is through disregard of several core principles of the concept. Inclusive education presupposes the following principles: valuing every student and staff member equally, increasing the participation of students in the curricula as well as in culture of a certain local community, restructuration of local culture, policies and practices in a way that allows them to meet the existing diversity of students, reduction of barriers standing on the way to learning and participation for all of the categories of students, recognition that inclusion in education is the part of inclusion in society in general, seeing the difference between students not as a barrier but as a source of opportunities to support the learning process (Runswick-Cole, Katherine, 113). There are many more of those and here were given only the main ones, which at the same time constitute the matter of greatest concern for American special education.
The cause of a problem of system’s inconsistency with the basic principles that are supposed to provide guidance to it is the impossibility of the system to provide the equal possibilities within the existing order to students with special educational needs. Current level of effort on inclusion of such students in the mainstream learning process with students is, of course, appreciated by students with disabilities and their parents but is far from enough. …