Making it happen;All levels;Special needs;Books

3rd April 1998 at 01:00
INTEGRATING PUPILS WITH DISABILITIES IN MAINSTREAM SCHOOLS. Making It Happen. By Helen Kenward. David Fulton pound;12.99.

Helen Kenward's book serves as a timely starting point for special needsco-ordinators and teachers. It shows how arrangements for children with physical disabilities can fit into the existing framework of IndividualEducation Plan writing, management of support and classroom differentiation. Additional provision such as adapting the working environ-ment, equipment and specialist programmes means that pupils can take part in most subjects.

Some of the harder issues for schools, such as responsibility for administering medication, medical training for support staff and arrangements for school trips are dealt with. In places the layout is surprising: a brave section on bereavement is abruptly followed by time-tabling arrangements.

There is basic information about the main disabilities and conditions and accompanying learning difficulties, such as "cocktail party syndrome", when copied chatter without comprehension may flow from children with spina bifida, or the low self-esteem experienced by children with epilepsy.

Suggestions for resources with action photographs invite a whole new way of spending the special needs budget. This is a positive book; it should encour-age all of us to "make it happen".

Bridget Evetts is a special needs officer for West Sussex

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