Special education means specially designed instruction which meets the special educational and related needs of an exceptional child.
It is not entirely different from the education of average children.
It includes those aspects of education which are specific in addition to the regular programme for all children.
It is something special-special materials, special training techniques, special equipment and special help, special facilities may be required for special categories of children having special needs
Visually impaired children may require reading materials in large print.
Hearing impaired children may require hearing aid, auditory training, lip reading etc.
Orthopedically handicapped children may require wheel chairs and removed of architectural barriers.
Mentally retarded children need skill training related service such as special transportation, medical and psychological assessment, physical and occupational therapy and counseling.
Aims and objectives of Segregated Education
Special education has the same objectives as those of regular education
- Human resource development through providing appropriate education to children.
- National development,
- Social reconstruction,
- Civic development,
- Vocational efficiency etc.
In addition to these objectives special education has certain special objectives such as the following:
- Early identification and assessment of special needs of disabled children.
- Early intervention to prevent a handicapping condition from become a serious one for remediation of learning problems and compensation by teaching the child new ways of doing things
- Parent counseling about prevention and remediation of defects, care and training of disabled children in daily life skills, self help skills, pre-academic skills and communication skills.
- Community mobilization and awareness of problems of disabled children and their education.
- Rehabilitation of the handicapped children.
- To develop realistic self concept that strategically determine for effective living
Characteristics of Segregated Education
Segregated education is meant for exceptional children who needs special individualized attention.
A team of professionals: special educators, regular classroom teachers, psychologists, speech therapists, psychotherapists and specialist doctors bear the primary responsibility for helping exceptional children maximize their capabilities.
Segregated /Special education is differentiated from regular education by its curriculum, that is by what is taught? For example, teaching self help skills or training in reading and writing
In regular education the school system dictates the curriculum but in special education the child’s individual needs dictate the curriculum
Special education is differentiated from regular education by methods used by teachers. One special educator may use sign language to communicate with his students. Another special educator may use task analysis and skill training for mentally retarded children
Special education is a profession, a service with tools and techniques to meet the special needs of exceptional children
Special education is individually planned, systematically implemented and carefully evaluated instruction to help exceptional learners achieve self sufficiency.
Principles of Segregated Education
Principle of Individual Differences
No two individuals are alike. Every child is different from other but some children are very different from others in ways that are specific regarding education and special education is required to meet their education needs.
Principle of zero rejection
All children with disabilities should be provided free and appropriate education. No child should be deprived of education because of its disability. The school system should not have an option to accept or reject a child for education
Principle of Non-discriminatory evaluation
Students who need special education must be clearly identified to ensure that they receive appropriate service. Each student must receive a full individual examination before being placed in a special education programme with tests required at intervals to assess his progress and difficulties in learning.
Principle of Individualized Education Programme (IEP)
Students with special needs require individualized education programme either in a resource room or a special class in the regular class for some part of the day.
Principle of least restrictive environment
As far as possible, children with disability must be educated in an environment where there are no restrictions. This will help in development of their potentials.
Principle of parental participation
Segregated education can be made effective if parents participate actively in the educational programme designed for disabled children
Need and Importance of Segregated Education
A severely deviant child is not supposed to take part in the routine activities meant for normal children. He will either be frustrated there or frustrate others. Thus whole teaching learning process will be disturbed. Their proper adjustments in the society needs special learning arrangements for them.
When individual differences in learners are found to such an extent that all of them cannot be benefitted in normal classes, they are put into the category of exceptional for special learning arrangements
Exceptional children cannot take the benefits of regular classes due to their unique needs and abilities. They need special curriculum, special teaching strategies and special teacher to develop them to fullest extent.
Special education helps teachers, guardians, researchers and educational administrators to understand the specific problems faced by disabled children.
Selective placement is entailed through special education. It involves the complete assessment of children as well as their social environment by professionally qualified experts from different fields.
Special education requires many auxiliary services. For eg: the orthopedically handicapped children require physio therapy, occupational therapy and periodic physical examination.
The importance of special education can be associated with the problem faced by a teacher in a regular class. If in a regular class, a number of exceptional children are present, the teacher will have to devise a method of instruction which is suitable for all but sometimes it becomes difficult for general students. So separate classes required for special children.
Exceptional children can become a liability for the society if efforts are not made to educate and rehabilitate them. They can be productive in those areas where they are not disabled.
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