“In reality inclusion is creating a nightmare for special education teachers concerned for their students’ welfare and for mainstream teachers who lack training and experience to deal with the handicapped.” P. 144
“Our experience with Andy, and the Yeagers’ experience with Lindsay reinforce my belief that higher-functioning children with Down syndrome will do better if they are placed in special classes for academic subjects (provided the teacher is good) instead of struggling to keep up with their peers in a regular classroom and spending much of their time in a pull-out program with a resource teacher.” P. 145
Wyllie makes her position on inclusion clear in this chapter. Full inclusion, as a matter of civil rights rather than educational practice, is a controversial subject in our community. No matter where you fall on the issue, we can appreciate that Wyllie’s beliefs come from her own personal experience and her own perspective.
Have your personal experiences within the education system influenced your opinion of inclusion? Do you have opinions about different educational methods like the ones discussed in this chapter? (phonics, Dewey, Montessori)
This chapter chronicles the different classes, teachers, and educational methods used with Andy in elementary school. How did you feel about the story overall? Was it similar to your own experiences? What memories did it trigger?