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An article from Pamela S. Wolfe and Tracey E. Hall provides a good insight regarding how to make successfully include students with severe disabilities in inclusion classroom.  It focuses on how, when and where to include the students with severe disability instead of debating whether to include them or not.  

In the box below, it offers key information relating to the idea of inclusion and who is involve with it.  As you can see, IEP and professional plays an important role toward creating an successful inclusion environment.  Schools are increasing placing students with severe disabilities in the general education environment but they didn't go far enough to achieve the theory of inclusion.  The school needs to offer activities that will focus on the IEP's objectives toward increase content knowledge instead of just social integrations.

The box below, Cascade of Integration Options aim to illustrates a range of accommodations and services the school could do in order to include students with severe disabilities to general education setting.  They also includes series of questions designed to help teachers to make decision according to the most appropriate integration option while deliver content area instructions.

The author emphasis on the essential of educators' collaboration in order to determine the appropriate integration and inclusion educational program for the students with severe disabilities.  They identified two stages of planning for the educators to prepare the program.  The first stage, preplanning, involves with identify key components of the general education lesson and the special education teachers figures out how can it be address to meet the need of the student's IEP objective in order to achieve content area instructions.  The second stage involves planning by having the general education and special education teacher to meet and discuss the adaption, accommodation, and additional supports that will be require in order for the students with severe disabilities to success in the inclusion environment.

The schedule below is a case study that shows the Cascade of Integration Options in action.  As you can notice in the schedule, they have preplanning by identify general education curriculum key components and the IEP objectives of the student as well as the planning aspect that involves adaption, accommodation, and additional supports.

Remember, the goal of inclusion is not to make the students with severe disabilities to perform at the level of the students without disabilities, the goal is to provide the students with severe disabilities a learning experience of the general education curriculum in a meaningful way that will benefit their content knowledge.


Wolfe, P.E. & Hall, T.E. 2003.  Making inclusion a reality for students with severe disabilities.  Teaching Exceptional Children, 35(4), 56.

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