Relationship between special education need on inclusion and Education policies

Relationship between special education need on inclusion and Education policies


Pupils with special education need an education system that will not only provide them with the quality of education they need but also one that will enable them to participate in decisions that affect them. Children who have special needs are children who have some disorder or even disability which compromises their ability to achieve academic excellence. The methods of educating children can be quite extensive and diverse this means that there are those who may only benefit from a particular system of education system or curricula. Education seeks to provide a structured experience for learning unlike incidental learning. These structures have to meet the needs of children who have special needs (Farell 2010).

It is estimated that at least one in five children have special education needs. Children who have special education needs can be classified into three different kinds needs. That is statement of Special educational, School action plan and School action needs. School action is when a pupil needs extra help which is different from what is provided by the current curriculum. While School action plus is where the school will have to get extra need from outside specialists who may specifically focus on language, speech, psychology and the health of a pupil. When it comes to the statement it means that the pupil has carried a particular test and the results may show that the pupil may need extra help. There is, therefore, a special document showing that the child needs more help than other students and the needs that they need can be provided for in the school that they are in (Department for Education 2011 a).

In England there had been a segregated special education school. According to the 1944 act schools were to be separated according to the special needs of children with disabilities. This was known as the mainstream schooling, schools were meant to accommodate more students who required special needs. Mainstream schooling was meant to provide the special education needs with the same opportunity with other children despite the challenges that they faced as pupils (Milward & Dyson 2000).

The various forms of Special  Education Needs have evolved over the years  and have even become more complicated  in terms of the policies made and the practical finding regarding the most pertinent issues  that is today widely discussed known  inclusion. There have been debates how the concept of inclusion can be can play a key role in ensuring that  all children with special needs get what they really need. The special education needs to have values such as inclusion so that to provide a form of diversification and equality in the education sector (Vickerman and Hodkinson 2009).

Vickerman and Hodkinson argue that disabled children should also take part in the decision making procedures and policy making. The participation of disabled children would lead into a more ideal and equal formation of The Special education needs policies as well as the strategies needed (Vickerman and Hokinson 2009).This paper will look at the inclusion as the most pertinent issue of the special education needs (SEN) and how the concept has been applied to fit into the strategies needed for children with special needs.


Inclusion is a pertinent issue because children are the main stakeholders in the successful implementation of the various special needs programmes that can be placed by the government. Other stakeholders include parents and professionals for instance educational specialists. Initially the SEN was known to include psychologists and medical doctors. However, it has been noted that children also have to be included. It is therefore, important very to understand the term inclusion especially in the context of decision making and policy making procedures (Garner 2009).

Inclusion as a concept has a more social and systematic meaning. When you look at it in terms of the special education needs .One can say that it means the an education system which has the capacity to accommodate children with special needs. However, when it comes to decision making procedure and policy making one can say that inclusion entails accommodating the views of children with special needs to somehow influence the decision and policy making of the various programmes of special needs. Inclusion should not be confused with term integration which is more about the placement of an individual rather than the participation of individuals, in inclusion (Norwich 2008)

There is, therefore, a close association regarding the terms SEN and Inclusion. In the history of the SEN, inclusion has been used a lot as a directive for the education policy. Inclusion as a directive of the education policy has brought a lot of challenges among teachers in schools. The challenges are that of the various assumptions made on the different roles that the schools have and the teachers. It therefore not only about the inclusion of   pupils but also teachers who also have a role to play in the special education needs (Ellis 2008).

Many argue that inclusive education should planned in that schools can be made to be more responsive to the needs of all people and this includes children with special needs. In order to have SEN which promotes the inclusion of pupils, teachers and schools there is a need of an inclusive education system. Inclusion in the education will need to address issues at both the micro and macro level. There is also the need to realize the political implications that inclusion may have on SEN (Mitchell 2005).

An education system that does not meet the needs of the children with special needs has a significant impact on the quality of life that children have. Parents of children with specials needs have claimed that the system has a lot of bureaucracy and yet it still does not meet the needs of their children. The policies that are put in place should thus emphasize more on the ability and capacity of the policy in meeting the needs of the pupils with special needs. Inclusion is thus essential, because it stakeholders like parents and the pupils are the most affected (Department of education 2011 b).

It is also important to note that the society is rapidly changing into a more competitive society especially through aspects like the occupational and economical structure. All these changes have put a lot of pressure on the need to even emphasize more on the social responsibilities and human rights issues (Cline and Frederickson, 2002).

Academic levels have been put so a higher standards so that children are able to meet what is expected of them from the society. Parents are thus pressurized on parents to choose the best school for their children. However the best schools may look at children with special needs as those who have come to lower the grades of the school. Such schools may thus interfere with the inclusion of students in schools and at the same time compromise their ability to get the quality of education that they deserve (Evans & Lunt, 2002).

There have been new reforms in SEN that has enabled children to participate more on the participation of children with special needs in decision making procedures. However there have been arguments’ made by teachers and politicians who claim that children ought to be treated as possessions of their guardians or parents. This code of practice by SEN may not be well implemented because some parents may not well participate well by avoiding the participation of their children in such matters that concern their children. The challenges that is faced in this situation is the capability of pupils to make good decisions to that can have a significant influence of the national making procedures. Pupils, therefore, need to know on their rights as not only as children but children who need special education needs (Cline & Frederickson 2002).

The way children are socialized is also very important in promoting the inclusion of them in SEN. There are children who have special needs and the way they interact with other individuals in Schools maybe different in that when it comes to school they feel that other people  do not understand other than their parent. This means that they have more confidence in their parent to help in what they need not their school mates or teachers. This will not foster the inclusion of them in decision making procedures. Families and individuals have to, therefore, come in and ensure their children that all people around them including themselves in school understand them. They can thus, feel free to address issues that affect them to their teachers. It is important to note that even if government comes up with good policies which enhance their inclusion in SEN programmes, parents also have to explain too their children about the special needs they have and how they can benefit from their school by addressing their issues (Cline and Frederickson 2002).

Rose argues that politicians and policy makers also have a role play in ensuring that everybody is included. However, their roles to promote inclusion can be limited by the fact that they may have their own personal motivations and these personal motivations maybe temporary. The good personal motivations that they may have may thus fade away over time and the implementation of inclusion strategies of pupils who have   special needs may thus fail to take off. Children with special needs are already in a situation that makes them to be an easily forgotten and marginalized group in the society. Having politician who only values their own needs rather than the needs of such minority groups makes it even harder for factors like inclusion to be implemented (Rose 2010).

All individuals at the macro and micro level have a potential in promoting the inclusion of children in policies that directly affect children. Head teachers have this potential in influencing their stuff to cooperate in order to reach the goals of having children whose special needs to participate in decision making procedure (Ainscow et al. 2006).


One can say that in order to ensure that there is inclusion among stakeholders particularly children. Children have to be informed well on their right and parents should also stop treating pupils as their possessions. On the other hand, politicians and teachers should also ensure that their Motives are right so as to ensure that they will be easily influenced by circumstances that favor them at one point in time. Inclusion, is a very relevant issue in ensuring that pupils with special needs receive the education that they deserve regardless of the challenges that they may face as student which maybe inevitable.


Ainscow, M., Booth, T., Dyson, A., Farrell, P., Frankham, J., Gallannaugh, F., Howes, A., and Smith. R 2006, “Improving Schools, Developing Inclusion”, Routledge, London

Department for Education. (2011a). “Special Education Information Act: An Analysis”, 2011.Retrieved 24th February 2012 <>

Department for Education. (2011b).  “SEN and Disability Green Paper; Executive Summary. Retrieved 24th February 2012 <>

Dyson, A., & Millward, A 2000, “Schools and Special Needs: Issues of Innovation and Inclusion”, Paul Chapman, London.

Evans, J. & Lunt, I 2002, “Inclusive Education: Are there limits?” European Journal of Special Needs Education. 17, 1 – 14.

Ellis, S 2008, “Special needs and Inclusion: Reflection and Renewal”. Retrieved  24 February 2012,


Farrell, M. 2010, “Debating Special Education”, London: Taylor & Francis

Frederickson, N. and Cline, T. 2009, “Special Educational Needs, Inclusion and Diversity”, 2nd edition, Open University Press Maidenhead, Berkshire.

Garner, P 2009, “ Special Educational Needs: The Key Concepts”, Routledge, London

Hodkinson, A. & Vickerman, P. (2009) “Key Issues in Special Education Needs and Inclusion”, Sage Publications, London.

Mitchell, D. 2005, “ Contextualising Inclusive Education: Evaluating old and New International Paradigms”, Routledge Falmer, London.

Norwich, B. 2008, “Dilemmas of difference, Inclusion and Disability”, Routledge, London.

Rose, R 2010, “Confronting obstacles to inclusion: international responses to developing”

New York, NY  Routledge.

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