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Speechless Puts the Spotlight on Inclusive Education

Rockville, Md., Oct. 8 – The most recent episode of Speechless focused on the importance of inclusive education.

Maya is pleasantly surprised to learn a group of families with kids with disabilities have joined them at Lafayette after hearing a speech she gave at a conference about “mainstreaming and the parent-educator-student partnership.”

“It’s the school that teaches the child, but it’s the parents who teach the school,” Maya said, stressing how that as a parent you want to make sure that the school has the tools needed for your child to succeed in class that will help them later in life.

As the new parents ask for more advice, Maya is more then willing to share what she has done to make sure J.J. has got what he needs being in an inclusive environment.

Students with disabilities need to be able to get the tools they need in school to succeed. Nationally, only 65 percent of students with disabilities graduate high school each year compared to 86 percent of student without disabilities. That means there is 21-point gap in outcomes. Furthermore, only seven percent of students with disabilities graduate college. As such, educators have a critical role to play in empowering more students with disabilities to succeed.

Being in an environment with children your own age is beneficial whether the student has a disability or not. While there are many positives, one of the biggest is the potential to prevent a child from learning any negative stigma about colleagues with disabilities.

Speechless airs on Wednesdays on ABC 8:30 p.m. ET. 


Meet the Author

Katie Townes

Katie Townes is a Communications Fellow at RespectAbility and a graduate of City University of New York City College. She wants to break perceived thoughts people might have about a person with a disability. She created a platform for gamers with and without disabilities to come together in a judgement-free environment.

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