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An Ethical Issue in Education

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Heidi Howard

on 12 October 2012

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Transcript of An Ethical Issue in Education

ETHICS Although inclusion or full inclusion is not a required part of the Individuals with Disabilities Act, it is a way to humanely educate our special needs population—in stark contrast to warehouses. However, there may need to be some ethical questions regarding inclusion/full inclusion that should be addressed in order to determine the best path for these special needs children. Summary of the Ethical Educational Issue of Inclusion This advertisement is hosted by educational consultant Cathy Hamilton. The closing statement gives her very passionate philosophical stance regarding the ethical issues surrounding the current topic of inclusion in general education classes for special needs students. In her video series she provides her passionate account of how and why inclusion evolved and how special education teachers can pair with general education teachers to improve classroom instruction while promoting high achievement for all students.

Source: Inclusion—A Current Issue With ethics issues, there are no easy answers and there are multiple points of views.
Some studies currently advocate for including special education students in the general education classrooms (Janney, Snell, Beers, Sapon-Shevin, 2003; Villa, Thousand, 2003). In these studies full inclusion verses seems to be a point of controversy.
Other articles clearly question the benefit to the special education student. It is suggested that there can be harm to the general education program when special education students are fully included (Crawford; Rozycki, 2002; Sklaroff, 1994). Full inclusion is an educational issue riddled with ethical considerations.
One distinction that should be made here is that there is a difference between “mainstream” and “inclusion.”
Mainstream means that the child must keep up with the classroom work as assigned to all children.
Inclusion requires the commitment by all parties for the child to simply benefit from being in a general class without the understood requirement of the leveled assignments for all students in the classroom.
The student in an inclusion setting naturally would have the services that he/she is entitled to such as tutoring. Inclusion/Full Inclusion/Mainstream Full inclusion is an educational issue riddled with ethical considerations.
One distinction that should be made here is that there is a difference between “mainstream” and “inclusion.”
Mainstream means that the child must keep up with the classroom work as assigned to all children.
Inclusion requires the commitment by all parties for the child to simply benefit from being in a general class without the understood requirement of the leveled assignments for all students in the classroom.
The student in an inclusion setting naturally would have the services that he/she is entitled to such as tutoring. Public education in respect to the education of special needs children reminds us of representing a “social contract.”
At Stage 4, people want to keep society functioning. However, a smoothly functioning society is not necessarily a moral ideal. At Stage 5, people want to know, "What makes for a good society?"
There are laws for social order such as the Public Law 94-142: Education of All Handicapped Children Act (1875) and The Individuals with Disabilities Act (1997). One wonders though is if our schools have the ability to meet the needs of all the students that they are entrusted with.
Also, the Disabilities Act makes it clear that the rights of the disabled must be respected, under law. However, shouldn’t one’s rights be respected regardless of whether there is a Federal Law declaring penalty for not doing so? This is reminiscent of KOHLBERG'S SIX STAGES of Moral development.
Level 1. Preconventional Morality
Stage 1. Obedience and Punishment Orientation
Stage 2. Individualism and Exchange
Level II. Conventional Morality
Stage 3. Good Interpersonal Relationships
Stage 4. Maintaining the Social Order
Level III. Postconventional Morality
Stage 5. Social Contract and Individual Rights
Stage 6: Universal Principles In the past the educational system warehoused these special needs children and now we are integrating these special needs children with children of the same age.
Often there is no rhyme or reason for their full inclusion, so the ethical question is why are we doing it?
What educational value is being gained and what is the cost to the teacher and the other students in the classroom—and moreover the special needs child.
Full inclusion must be done with preparation and with sound educational reasons. The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), enacted in 1975, mandates that children and youth ages 3–21 with disabilities be provided a free and appropriate public school education.
In fall 2008 95 percent of 6- to 21-year-old students with disabilities were served in regular schools;
3 percent were served in a separate school for students with disabilities;
1 percent were placed in regular private schools by their parents;
less than 1 percent each were served in one of the following environments: in a separate residential facility, homebound or in a hospital, or in a correctional facility .
Source: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics (2011). Digest of Education Statistics, 2010 (NCES 2011-015), Chapter 2. Response
What percentage of students with disabilities are educated in regular classrooms? Question In general people fair well with problems that have dichotomous considerations and resolutions.




However, in ethics the issues are multifaceted and the actions best address the problems by dealing with different areas simultaneously so that the overall condition is improved—hopefully for all involved. Ethical Issues of Full Inclusion Because of this paramount responsibility, there is a requirement of well-defined ethics and values and well-bounded visible legal regulations. Some of the many issues in educational ethics are:
Student Confidentiality
Student Cheating
Charter Schools
Teacher Choice within Schools
Suburban Socioeconomic Segregation in Districts
School Uniform Policy
Random Drug Tests for Athletes
Standardized Testing (FCAT)
The English philosopher, poet, and journalist stated, “Education is simply the soul of a society as it passes from one generation to another.” Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874–1936) Dutch Jewish philosopher was best known for his book Ethics. He was the first major philosopher in the Western tradition to argue for democracy and for freedom of thought and expression. Benedict de Spinoza (1632–1677) Ethics is also known as moral philosophy. It is a branch of philosophy that involves systematizing, defending, and recommending concepts of right and wrong behavior.
The three major areas of in ethics are:
metaethics investigates where our ethical principles come from, and what they mean;
normative ethics takes on a more practical task, which is to arrive at moral standards that regulate right and wrong conduct;
applied ethics involves examining specific controversial issues. Areas of Ethics An Ethical Issue in Education Special education has become a drain on human and financial resources in districts across our country.
In large part because the philosophy of full inclusion is out of control and is not in the best interest of all special education students.
Inclusion has become an entitlement for most parents of special needs students.
The combination of less than adequate funding of IDEA, a costly federal mandate, and the unfair treatment of both general and special education students will further harm the education of all students. General Issues Indeed, education is an ongoing process has been in the past and shall remain a very serious responsibility. Ethics came from the Greek word ethos. It was popularized by the philosopher Aristotle and further developed by latter philosophers. The word also traces to Ta Ethika, title of Aristotle's work. Education Answers EDUCATION ISSUES IN EDUCATION 1st step
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