|Titel:||The evaluation of a ten-week programme in Cyprus to integrate children with multiple disabilities and visual impairments into a mainstream primary school|
|Form:||Aufsatz / Artikel|
|Autor(en):||Dora Papageorgiou,Yiannoula Andreou,Spyros Soulis|
A basic need for a child is to belong to a group (Maslow, 1970). Groups help children: to develop relationships and to foster individual mental health (Johnson and Johnson, 1989); and disabled and non-disabled children, when given assistance, can develop relationships with each other (Sideris, 1998). But there are very few opportunities in Cyprus for children with multiple disabilities and visual impairment to learn alongside mainstream school children. A ten-week pilot programme was developed and implemented in a Cypriot mainstream and specialist school to examine whether interaction between children with multiple disabilities and visual impairment and mainstream school children can be achieved through the co-education of the two groups. Three primary school children with multiple disabilities and visual impairment from a specialist school and 15 children with no disabilities who attended a neighbouring mainstream primary school took part in this programme. Central to the programme was the principle that every child has the right to participate in common learning and playing (Feuser, 1982). This paper reports those key findings from the evaluation of the programme from the perspective of the children that took part in it. We show that, even over a short period of time, co-education can be achieved and be of benefit to both groups.
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