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Overmilitant activism

I'm still working on my book. It's getting there slowly, and I am really enjoying the process. I've been recently going through a few of my old blog entries about inclusion and the whole inclusive education debate, leading me to reflect on how my attitude has changed since I wrote them. I used to oppose what I called segregated education quite militantly. I had been lead to believe, by various people I had met online, that segregated education was totally needless, and that special schools were more or less designed to deliberately oppress disabled people. To such people it was a black and white issue, and for a time I agreed with them. After all, why can't everyone get taught together?

It's a lovely idea, but these days such militancy worries me. In the disability community, these self-proclaimed activists seem to think disabled people are oppressed as black people or women once were. For instance, I've come across one or two people seemingly branding the death of Alfie Evans an act of murder. They go far too far in making out that the problems we face are deliberately put there, as if they want to think of theirselves as freedom fighters in the same vein as Gandhi or Martin Luthour King. One of the reasons why I volunteer at Charlton Park Academy is to avoid falling into such dogmatism over the issue of special education.

I am not saying we don't face problems - of course we do - but, at the risk of being a bit controversial, I'm starting to think some of these 'activists' are just in it for the self-promotion. They go on and on about how disabled people are so oppressed, and how they courageously fight for all our freedom, but most of them only have mild impairments and very little first hand experience of the things they claim to be resisting. Education is not a black and white issue, and one size does not fit all. Trying to teach certain children alongside kids who don't have special needs sometimes does more harm than good. This is not an issue we can politicise or be dogmatic about, just because you like being an activist.


[Edited 29/04/2018 at 18:45:37 - Added a bit ]

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