Integration of Children with Special Educational Needs into Mainstream Schools − Inclusion or Delusion?
These two quotations highlight a major controversy in the field of special education at present: the move to promote the inclusion, or integration, of all children with special educational needs (SEN) into mainstream schools. In recent years there has been an increasing trend towards the inclusion of children with SEN into ordinary school placements. Some writers have suggested that such inclusion should be regarded as a 'right' of all children with SEN (Kirkaldy, 1990; Oliver, 1996). Others have warned that widespread adoption of inclusive models will lead to a deterioration in the education provided for many children with SEN, as well as the eventual demise of the field of special education itself (Kauffman and Hallahan, 1995; Welton, 1989).