At the center of B.C. provincial Inclusive Education Policy are the following beliefs:
~Everyone can learn; all children can, and do, learn.
~Learning is an individual and social process; each student benefits from learning with their peers. Each student needs to feel like they belong, are valued, and have a contribution to make.
~Learning requires active participation: each student needs purposeful roles and responsibilities.
~Learning occurs in a variety of ways and at different rates; each student is unique in their abilities and needs.
As a district, we are committed to these beliefs and use them to guide the delivery of services and supports to students with diverse abilities and disabilities. We embrace the notion that diversity is the norm, not the exception and is a treasure to be celebrated. We recognize and we strive to celebrate the gifts and talents that we believe all students possess. We acknowledge that diversity enriches school culture and increases knowledge and understanding of similarities and differences.
Provision of programs and services within neighborhood schools is based on tiers/levels of support. The teacher is best supported through a school based collaborative problem-solving model where services and assistance support the classroom. District specialists, who are part of the Inclusive Education (IE) team, are accessed through the school-based team. These district IE itinerant staff include:
- School Psychologists
- Teachers of the Visually Impaired
- Teachers of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
- Resource Teachers
- Speech and Language Pathologists
- Occupational Therapists
- Physical Therapists
- Learning Disability Intervention Teachers
- District Inclusive Education Consultants
- District Social Emotional Teachers
Our model for the delivery of support by Inclusive Education focuses upon:
- the belief that equity empowers each learner to thrive holistically
- the belief that each learner achieves excellence in learning when they have the confidence and competencies to pursue their passions and strengths
- the classroom community is the primary site of the student's educational program
- collaboration to identify supports for the classroom teacher
- decision making through consultation and collaboration
- home, school, and community partnership
- strength based planning through the Individual Education Plan process
- universal design for learning to remove barriers for all students and differentiated instruction to meet the personalized needs of learners
- the importance of social-emotional learning
The supports and services provided by Inclusive Education in SD 23 are guided by our district's Strategic Plan . This plan outlines a framework which maximizes success and independence for all learners by creating inclusive classrooms and learning communities that:
- Value the unique identities, abilities, and diverse contributions of each learner
- Build supportive, culturally relevant learning environments that foster belonging, well-being, inclusivity, safety, and community
- Engage family and community as integral partners in the creation of meaningful, purposeful, and relational learning
We achieve this through professional collaboration which cultivates networks and teams of professionals, parents, and community stakeholders to share understandings and plan for meaningful inclusion. Our goal is to create inclusive learning environments where students feel accepted, valued, confident and safe to engage in learning, and where collaborative teams are committed to a shared vison to support students in reaching their full potential.