At the Toronto District School Board we continue to actively review how we address the special education needs of our students and explore new ways to support them.
We know that students with exceptionalities have the same basic needs as their peers.
They need to:
Last year, the Board released a research report titled, A Case for Inclusive Education (Parekh, 2013). This report explores the concept of inclusivity – where all students across a spectrum of needs successfully learn side-by-side – a model we are working towards.
- Participate and be included as fully as possible in all activities, curricular and co-curricular, of our school communities;
- Be valued as individuals for their unique contributions to school life;
- Have no boundaries placed on, or prejudgments made about, their capacity for learning,
- Enjoy a safe and secure learning environment;
- Enjoy a sense of belonging to a school community that accepts ownership and responsibility for their learning; and,
- Be unencumbered by stereotypical, outdated perspectives on abilities and disabilities.
Although placement in a regular class with appropriate special education supports is always the first consideration for students , we also recognize that regular class placement is not for all students. In some cases, students may have needs that require more intensive support. While working with parents/guardians/caregivers to explore available support options, it may be determined that a student’s needs can be best met in a special education class.
The TDSB is striving to create supportive and inclusive learning environments for our students. In the end, our goal is to determine the most appropriate learning environments for helping all students reach their full potential.