Per section 300.115 of IDEA Regulations, it states that every public agency should guarantee that the removal of children with disabilities from the regular educational environment should only occur if the severity of the disability cannot be addressed in a regular classroom with supplementary aids and services. That being stated, the general consensus in the state of Illinois is that the majority of students are included in the general education setting, with the exception of students who have severe and profound disabilities. Partly because of this, my opinion is that everyone should be exposed to the same curriculum; however, not every student should be assessed in the same way, so the curriculum should fit the needs of the students. My co-teacher and I often group by ability for our English 3 class. All of our students are exposed to the same curriculum, but they are assessed in different ways because some students need to be challenged more than others whereas others need things simplified for them. We do this because it is what is best for the students in our classroom. Jacobs even states, “curriculum should cultivate a culture that nurtures creativity in all of our learners” (Jacobs, 2010). I interpret that to mean that everyone learns in different ways, it’s just finding what best meets the needs of our students. We should always focus on what is best for our students.
2-Joseph Stephens (100 words)
I do believe that the same classes in the same school should have the same curriculum to use for their classes. BUT, with that being said, I also believe that there needs to be some flexibility given to each class as well. Every school should have main ideas that every teacher needs to cover, but it should be up to the teacher to determine the pacing of the material depending on their specific class. Some classes may understand a topic a little quicker than other classes; if this is the case, that class should continue to move on instead of waiting for the other classes to catch up. While on the other hand, if a specific class is struggling on picking up a certain topic, you do not want to move on in hopes they eventually figure it out. You will need to take more time and ensure that everyone understands it before continuing with the curriculum. With that being said, I believe that each should school have their own school assessments that all teachers give to their classes, with modifications for those students that may need them. These assessments should not only cover the material that the class has gone through, but should make the students continue to think and use their minds more than anything else. As Jacobs says, “Preparation for future work situations requires teaching learners to use their minds well rather than testing them reductively.” I took this as saying that we should be ensuring that the students know how to problem solve in anything they do, rather than memorize certain facts or information.
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