What does the word inclusion mean in education, and how does it relate to equality and diversity?
When we talk about inclusion, we often think about adding someone with a disability to the organization in which we work. However, it is an idea that encompasses much deeper social aspects.
The main pillar of this concept is based on recognizing that everybody has their abilities and potential, different from those of others, so there is the same number of responses to different needs.
We must understand inclusion as a system to provide access and reciprocal participation and that someone with a disability has the possibility of participating on equal terms.
How to communicate naturally with people with disabilities?
One of the most recurrent questions asked within organizations is how to communicate with a fellow with some degree of disability without making them feel awkward.
Among the considerations that must be taken to speak with a person with a disability, the National Disability Service mentions the following:
- Be natural.
- Treat adults like adults, and address the person by name.
- Understand that we are all people with the same rights (equality).
- Respect the status of the person.
- Don’t treat the person as a child.
- Avoid emphasizing differences, as this reinforces the “them” versus “us” attitude.
- It focuses attention on people’s abilities and not on their disability.
- Avoid unnecessary distinctions, do not adopt exclusive, overprotective, compassionate, or pitiful attitudes.
- Do not present a person with a disability as someone dependent, in a pitiful state, or as a special person.
- Avoid directing the word or looking only at the companions or tutors.
What is inclusion in the educational field?
For UNESCO, educational systems must eliminate obstacles to the participation and performance of all their students, taking into account the diversity of their needs, capacities, and particularities.
Inclusive education, the agency points out, is based on principles such as equity, equal opportunities, access without distinctions or privileges, and attention to educational needs as central elements of development.
Among the pending questions that must be addressed from the framework of inclusive education, according to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization are the following:
- How is educational justice built?
- How to address the social destiny that inclusive education will generate?
- Do resumes guarantee inclusion?
What does inclusion allow?
According to the slogan, the site includes me, adopting measures of inclusion in companies or educational institutions tends to create a virtuous circle that impacts the entire organization as it allows:
- See diversity as a power, not a problem.
- Provide equitable access that recognizes the contribution of each person.
- Have a culture of respect in the face of differences.
- Assess the contribution of each person to society.