Our right to special schools

1st July 2005 at 01:00
As the father of a child with special needs I read Mark Vaughan's letter on Warnock and inclusion with interest.

Being at the consumer end of an educational philosophy leads one to some sceptical interpretations. It seems to me that many arguments around inclusion are mired in talk of human rights seen only from the perspective of those who take the intellectual and ethical high ground rather than recognising that any good idea can be misused and even abused.

I would like to focus on two points from Mr Vaughan's letter. He writes of the disabled adults who describe themselves as "special school survivors": we are creating a new cohort of disabled adults who will be describing themselves as inclusion survivors.

Sadly it cannot be "taken as read that those who advocate inclusion want only good inclusion". It seems to me that to introduce inclusion without extensive and sustained training and resources, is either naive, or worse, seen as an economic bonus for the special needs budget.

As a parent of a vulnerable child I want choices for my child, as indeed she does too. The inclusion principle applied to all denies us that human right.

Steve Chinn

Klive Somerset

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