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Responding to pupils with mild intellectual disability in education

Mariëtte Huizinga, Dorien Graas and Anika Bexkens call attention to learning problems of children with mild intellectual disability in the classroom. Their new book aims to make it easier for teachers to respond to the specific educational needs of these children.

Teachers as key players

In "Kinderen met een licht verstandelijke beperking in het passend onderwijs" (Children with mild intellectual disability in inclusive education) the psychologists and remedial educationalist describe a broad vision on inclusive education for children with mild intellectual disability. In addition to discussing ways in which teachers can work with these children, the book outlines which professionals can support them and what they can expected from each of the parties involved. Anika Bexkens: “Teachers play an important role in making inclusive education work, but they should not be on their own. In our view, teachers are the key players, but they are surrounded by a team.” The editors are planning to develop an educational module for teachers based on the book.

Reactions from the field

The plan for the book started with an opinion article in the Dutch newspaper NRC on August 1st, 2015. Graas, Bexkens and Huizinga expressed their concerns about the consequences that the introduction of inclusive education could have for children with mild intellectual disability. Anika Bexkens: “We wanted to do more than conclude that a vision was lacking; we wanted to initiate the development of a vision on inclusive education for these children.” In composing the book, the editors took reactions from the field on their opinion article into account. The book contains chapters by the editors as well as contributions from a pupil, a parent and colleagues from research and (educational) practice.

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