The importance of inclusive education can be best summarized by this quote: “A diverse mix of voices leads to better discussions, decisions, and outcomes for everyone.” — Sundar Pichai, Google CEO.
- What is inclusive education?
- What are the different principles of inclusive education?
- What is the history of inclusive education in the Philippines?
- What is the current state of inclusive education in the Philippines?
- What are the benefits of inclusive education?
1. What is inclusive education?
Inclusive education signifies that all students are welcomed in their neighborhood schools and are supported to learn, contribute and participate in all aspects of the school community. Inclusive education is about ensuring access to quality education for all students by effectively meeting their diverse needs in a way that is responsive, accepting, respectful and supportive.
Inclusive education in the Philippines is a type of education that is designed to meet the needs of all students, including those with disabilities. It is based on the principle that all students should have the opportunity to learn and participate in the educational process.
There are some approaches being done by the Department of Education including:
- Providing educational support services to all students, including those with special needs
- Implementing inclusive teaching practices in all classrooms
- Creating accessible learning environments for all students
- Engaging families and communities in supporting inclusive education
2. What are the different principles of inclusive education?
Monash University in Australia elaborates on some key principles of inclusive education namely:
- All students have a right to an education
- All students should be valued and treated with respect
- All students should have access to the same curriculum
- All students should be given the opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of school life
- All students should be given the support they need to be successful in their educational journey
3. What is the history of inclusive education in the Philippines?
Inclusive education is a term used to describe the practice of educating students with disabilities in regular classrooms, as opposed to segregated special education classrooms. The history of inclusive education can be traced back to the 1800s, when schools for students with disabilities first began to appear in the United States. However, it was not until the 1970s that inclusive education began to gain traction as a movement, with the passage of landmark legislation such as the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). In the decades since, inclusive education has become increasingly prevalent, with a growing body of research supporting its effectiveness.
The history of special education in the Philippines can be traced back to the early 1900s when the first schools for children with disabilities were established. SPED in the Philippines was formally started by establishing the Insular School for the Deaf and Blind in Manila. In June 1963, an act promoting the education of the blind in the Philippines was launched and this act established teacher training courses and the Philippine National School of the blind.
4. What is the current state of inclusive education in the Philippines?
Special and inclusive education in the Philippines is in a state of transition. The country is in the process of implementing a new law on inclusive education, and is also working to improve its special education system. There are challenges in both areas, but the government is committed to making progress.
The alternative learning system in the Philippines is a non-formal education system that aims to provide basic education to out-of-school children, youth, and adults. The system is organized and managed by the Department of Education. It uses a variety of teaching and learning methods, including literacy campaigns, radio- and television-aided instruction, and community-based learning.
The Department of Education in the Philippines has a variety of programs and services in place for special children, depending on their individual needs. Some of the services that may be available include individualized education programs, speech and occupational therapy, and psychological counseling.
5. What are the benefits of inclusive education?
Inclusive education systems have been shown to improve academic outcomes for all students, regardless of their background or abilities. In one study, students in inclusive classrooms were found to have better grades and test scores than students in exclusive classrooms. In another study, students with disabilities who were included in general education classrooms had better social skills and behavior than students who were segregated in special education classrooms.
There are many benefits to an inclusive educational system. Some of these benefits include:
- All students have the opportunity to learn and be successful in school.
- All students feel welcomed, respected, and valued in their school community.
- All students have the opportunity to develop strong relationships with their peers and adults in their school.
- All students have the opportunity to learn about and experience diversity in their school community.
- All students have the opportunity to develop the skills and knowledge necessary to be successful in an increasingly diverse and global world
In summary, inclusive education is ensuring learners from multiple backgrounds are being accommodated. In the Philippines, this movement begun in the early 1900s with the establishment of a school for the deaf and blind. Currently in the Philippines, there are various programs in-order to accommodate different backgrounds such as the Alternative Learning System (ALS), Schools for the handicapped, Distance learning modalities and more.