Social justice & Special Education


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Social justice & Special Education

  1. 1. Social Justice & Special Education Rosaura Vazquez
  2. 2. Special Education Rosaura Vazquez EDU363: Education & Social Justice Instructor Barlow October 8, 2013
  3. 3. Social Justice & Special Education As we send our children to school we often think and wonder if they are being treated right, “fitting in”, or are they okay. Teachers as we assume, are there to treat them equally and teach them. However, that is not always the case, we have to really get to know the expectations of the classrooms as well as where is my child being placed and are they learning anything. The role of education in promoting equality and social justice is a major preoccupation of the politicians who play a central role in deciding what is taught in schools, where it is taught, to whom and by whom (Smith, 2011).
  4. 4. Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
  5. 5. What is going on? The social justice issue that is going on in the schools regarding special education is that students are being treated differently regarding their capabilities. • Low expectations from teachers who fail to challenge minority students • Placement criteria is subjective and arbitrary • Behavioral issues; the desire to get rid of a challenging child (Cox, 2008).
  6. 6. In recent Studies… In a study by Harry and Klinger (2007) one teacher from the southeast United States admitted to removing students from their classroom and instead requesting placement in special education because they were a “pain in the neck.”
  7. 7. What is Social Justice? Adams, Bell and Griffin (2007) define social justice as both a process and a goal. "The goal of social justice education is full and equal participation of all groups in a society that is mutually shaped to meet their needs. Social justice includes a vision of society that is equitable and all members are physically and psychologically safe and secure.“
  8. 8. Affecting our students Social justice has been affecting our students in the special education programs. They are looked at as students whom can not or are not capable of learning or interacting socially with the classroom. Teachers do not communicate well with them almost as if they were not there. They are not receiving a warm welcome as they should be due to their disability.
  9. 9. How do these students feel? Student achievement has gone down the drain for these students. They do not want to perform as they should because they are not getting recognized by their teachers or peers. Students with disabilities are looked at with little confidence that they too can achieve things. If teachers and others would sit down and acknowledge how much they are capable of doing then they will continue to work harder to have others recognize them.
  10. 10. What’s expected? We understand that classrooms are sites of cultural and social re- production and therefore cultural and social hierarchies must be carefully examined for the ways inequality and injustice are produced and perpetuated within the curriculum, the classroom, and the school (Oyler, 2001).
  11. 11. In the school systems… The dual system of special education and general education divides children into two categories: normal and abnormal. Thus, disability is viewed as pathology and after a full diagnostic process, a label is attached to the child. Special education professionals then relieve general educators of the responsibility for educating the child and design special, remedial educational services (Oyler, 2001).
  12. 12. Everyone is Equal!
  13. 13. Policy on treating each other.. As an educator I would apply as much knowledge to parents, peers and other students regarding our special needs students. We are all to be treated as equals and should all be given an opportunity to show others what we are capable of doing. Students have no boundaries they are capable of feelings, and interacting. As a community we must learn to understand that we may be different but we still need to treat each other as individuals and with respect. Treat others as you would like to be treated.
  14. 14. Continued Policy… As a community and partnership with parents we must work together to ensure the success in our students in the special needs programs. We will have monthly trainings and meetings to address any concerns. In each class we must make every attempt to teach and acknowledge when hard work as been taken. By inspiring others to change in the way they view our special needs students and showing them how successful and full of love and knowledge they have.
  15. 15. Every child has potential…
  16. 16. Barriers and Solutions There are many factors that could affect or hinder the growth for this opportunity in helping our students, the funding available for our programs, classrooms, instruments and resources. There are many solutions for these barriers: fundraisers, donations, yard sales and government assistance for resources.
  17. 17. Lets make a commitment! Including everyone in the community will help to spread the word out on equality and special needs awareness. These individuals are people just like us with many ways to amaze us on their teachings and doings. Lets get involved in the community showing them that we welcome them and their differences. There will be many relays, fundraisers, awareness meetings, and activities to become involved. Wear your Special Needs or Education t- shirts to support our cause on teaching others how differences are always welcomed.
  18. 18. ReferencesGoogle Images Cox, S., (2008).Equity In Elementary and Secondary Education: Race, Gender, and National Origin Issues Oyler, C., (2001). Preparing Teachers of Young Children to be Social Justice Oriented Educators Smith, (2011). An Introduction to Education &Social Justice
  19. 19. References Harry, Beth and Klinger, Janette (2007). Discarding the Deficit Model, Educational Leadership, 64, 5, pp. 16- 21.