When a child is placed into special education, there are a variety of emotions felt by not only the parent but also the child. Because special education is designed to provide a more tailored and individualized approach to healthcare, many children are often confused by the transition from a regular classroom setting to one which includes special education.
To ensure optimal outcomes in your child’s transition to special education, it is important to understand your role, as a parent, as well as the child’s teacher’s role in the education of your child. In addition to defining these two roles, parents should also be certain the child understands exactly what special education is so they can better prepare for the success in education that awaits them.
In the transition from traditional classroom setting to special education, the parents play a crucial role in becoming the advocate for the child and their specific disorder. In fact, many educational institutions welcome assertive parenting and active involvement in the education process. By becoming the assertive and actively involved parent, the relationship your child has with the special education teacher can be better assessed and, when a perfect match does not occur, it is the parent, as the child’s advocate, who usually is advised to request the change in classes.
In addition to parenting, special education teachers also play a crucial role in the transition into special education. For each child, the special education teacher should become well versed in the learning disability, as well as other impairments, associated with the child’s condition. Without this proper knowledge, the disabled child, often, will not feel acceptance in the special education setting and, as a result, may not succeed academically.
In addition to defining roles, the child entering special education, should also be taught about the positive advantages of special education. Specifically, special education should not be considered a place but, rather, an experience in which the special education child is exposed to a greater collaboration among teachers, health and education specialists as well as parents. Additionally, reinforcing acceptance and tolerance in the special education classroom while provide the child with a renewed sense of experience in the traditional classroom setting while allowing for additional reinforcement in the areas of academics and social acceptance.
As with any change in school curriculum, children who experience a change into the special education setting are often confused and anxious when the change first occurs. However, when parents and teachers work together to achieve a common goal, the successful education of the child, all parties to the effort are in a winning position.