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Principles of Inclusion for Children and Students with Disability in Education and Care

Inclusive education builds the capacity of early childhood centres and schools to educate and support all students and contributes to stronger communities.

The Principles of Inclusion were developed on behalf of the Minister for Education and Child Development by the Ministerial Advisory Committee:  Children and Students with Disability (MAC:  CSWD).

The Principles have been endorsed by the Department for Education and Child Development, Catholic Education South Australia and the Association of Independent Schools of South Australia.

Purpose of the Principles

  • promote equity, access, opportunity and the rights of children and students with disability in education and care
  • contribute to reducing discrimination against children and students with disability where they are treated less fairly than their peers
  • provide early childhood education and care centres (early childhood) and schools with broad and consistent criteria for inclusion so that they assess their progress towards inclusion
  • provide early childhood and school sectors with broad and consistent criteria to assess their progress towards inclusion.

Putting the Principles into practice

The document  explains each Principle, provides methods on how they can be achieved and suggests how a principle could work in practice.

The suggestions should be applied within the context and circumstances of each early childhood centre and school while adhering to requisite legislation, education sector guidelines and mandated standards. There may be other indicators not mentioned here that are particular to a site or sector.

The document recognises that methods to measure and record inclusion are still a work in progress, and that being inclusive requires conscious effort.

The Principles

  • All children and students who experience disability have the right to access and participate in education.
  • All children and students who experience disability have the ability to learn and the right to exercise their voice, choice and control in managing their own educational experiences.
  • All children and students who experience disability have the right to develop to their fullest potential and to be active, valued citizens in the community.
  • Teachers, early childhood education and care centre and school communities and the parents/carers/advocates of children and students who experience disability have the responsibility for taking action for inclusive behaviour in their education and care setting.
  • All children and students who experience disability have the right to an appropriate and adequate allocation of resources to enable their right to access and participate meaningfully in education.
  • All children and students who experience disability, their parents/carers/advocates, teachers and members of the early childhood education and care centre and school communities have the right to be safe – physically, emotionally, culturally and socially and to be treated respectfully.
  • All children and students who experience disability, their parents/carers/advocates, teachers and members of the school community have the responsibility to operate within the legal framework provided by the Australian and South Australian governments.

Contact

Ministerial Advisory Committee: Children and Students with Disability

Phone: (08) 8226 3632
Email: decdminadv [at] sa.gov.au