Co-location: best of both worlds

28th October 2005 at 01:00
Here we go again, with some taking part in the great inclusion debate treating every child with special needs as a member of one big homogeneous group.

Do children with complex physical disabilities have the same needs as those with profound learning difficulties, emotional difficulties or hearing loss? Of course not - they need radical differences in approach.

At this special school for children with severe and profound learning difficulties, we have spent the past 34 years building the very best educational provision. We have expert teaching, a specialist curriculum, and outstanding facilities, that no mainstream school can match.

And in answer to the 'Where's the inclusion?' question, we share our premises with a mainstream secondary and further education provider - and it's great!

So why are so many proponents of full inclusion blind to the unique needs of children with complex disabilities? Why can't they see that there are better inclusion possibilities, such as co-location, that can give 'the best of both worlds', with specialist teaching as well as inclusion?

Peter Gordon

Headteacher

Hazel Court school

Larkspur Drive

Eastbourne, East Sussex

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