TEACHER CORNER | Inclusive Education



by Liyan S. Benamira
Tambang Central School
Tinambac, Camarines Sur


In recent years, the Department of Education (DepEd) has taken a firm and proactive stand towards inclusive education.

Inclusive education basically means giving every child, regardless of his or her social class, special abilities or disabilities, or gender, access to education.

Education, according to DepEd, is a basic human right, one that is enshrined in the fundamental law of the land. Therefore, no child should be deprived of educational opportunities.


This philosophy, DepEd maintains, should be embraced not only by educators and school administrators, but also by parents, guardians, the school staff, and the other members of the community.

Strategies

DepEd recommends several strategies in attaining inclusive education.

One is called Child Find. This means the community, with the help of the local government, shall engage in mapping surveys and advocacy campaigns to convince all children to go to school.

Another is Assessment, the process of identifying the strengths and weaknesses of children through the use of formal and informal tools for proper program grade placement. This is a continuous process, which is led by DepEd itself.

Another strategy is Providing Program Options. In case of students with special learning disabilities, schools are recommended to have special classes, handled by a trained educator, or the integration of the student in a regular class where he/she may learn from peers.

Curriculum Modification is another strategy whereby adaptations and accommodations to foster optimum learning based on individual’s needs and potentials are implemented. These include methods such as team teaching, consultations, or support services from peers, volunteers, or specialists.

Lastly, DepEd recommends Parental Involvement, which prepares the child for academic, moral, and emotional development. This may be done through supporting the class activities or working as teaching aide.

Urgent matter

Inclusive education in DepEd is an urgent matter, as it will help solve the inequality in the access to education of many Filipino learners.

As it stands, not all Filipino potential learners are able to go to school, because of various factors such as lack of infrastructure, inadequacy of learning materials, or even weak political will from stakeholders.

As a teacher, I believe these factors should never be allowed to hinder the Filipino people from their basic human right to education.

Hand-in-hand, with the strategies recommended by DepEd, it is possible to work towards truly inclusive education.

This would not only help provide better opportunities for the learners, but also help towards building a more productive Filipino nation.
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