Inclusive Schools Week

Inclusive Schools Week 2012  Social Inclusion:  More than a seat in the class…

December 3 – 7, 2012. It will be here before you know it!

Scroll down to see ideas for celebrating Inclusive Schools Week from Newton parents

See the official website at www.inclusiveschools.org

To share your celebration, email our ISW co-chairs Lisa DePalma and Jo-Louise Allen at info@newtonpac.org or contact the PAC liaison at your school.

Scroll down to see:

  • Resources
  • Time Line for ISW 2012
  • Activities done in Newton for  past ISW

Resources

Time Line for ISW 2012

Monday Oct. 22 – Friday Nov. 2

Weeks 5 & 6 before Inclusive Schools Week

Contact parent volunteers; work with school Principal, Inclusion Facilitator, PTO President, other staff such as art teacher, music teacher, and librarian.Discuss ideas from Kickoff or come up with other ideas.  Work on a plan for implementing and roll out of your program/project.  Look at resource materials and determine what you need and in what quantity.  If you choose to order materials, do it now so they arrive in time.
Monday Nov. 5 – Friday Nov. 16

Weeks 3 & 4 before Inclusive Schools Week

Time to check in, have meetings with your ISW committee.Create sub-committees to carry out specific tasks.  If your idea involves student participation, Principal and specialists, and homeroom teachers should be on board to begin working on the program/project.  Example: if it’s an art project, assemble paper materials, markers, etc.  Parent volunteers assigned specific roles to help school staff.
Thanksgiving Week

2 weeks before Inclusive Schools Week

Enjoy the holiday, assess progress of your program/project
Monday Nov. 26 – Friday Nov. 30

1 week before Inclusive Schools Week

Final update meeting to make sure that your program/project is ready to go.  If you ordered materials, they need to be on site by the end of this week.
Monday Dec. 3 – Friday Dec. 7 

INCLUSIVE SCHOOLS WEEK

Celebrate, have fun!  Be sure to take photos and write an article for your school newsletters.  Be on the lookout for School Committee members, Superintendent Fleishman, and Mayor Setti Warren who might stop by to admire your projects and events.
After Inclusive Schools Week Time for reflection.  Congratulations – all the effort will bring ongoing great results.  Inclusion is a constant, living organism.  We continue to nurture inclusion.

Activities done in Newton for past Inclusive Schools Weeks

ELEMENTARY LEVEL

  • ART – School-wide Art Project – Cooperatively made Mandalas or giant Puzzle made by piecing together student works
  • LIBRARY – Display, read and suggest books throughout the week related to inclusion
  • Hand out a list of books on inclusion by grade level to both classroom teachers and parents
  • MUSIC – Teach songs in different languages cultures, talk about how voices come together in song and the beauty of both individual tone and harmony.
  • PE – Cooperative games and activities – Ropes Week, perfect opportunity to talk about team work, strength of the group vs individuals

CLASSROOMS

  • Students fill out “Inclusion means to me” strips by filling in the blank … “Inclusion means ___ or “I feel included when ___.” Strips can be displayed around school
  • Staff can do this as well!!!! At one school staff filled out strips during a faculty meeting before ISW, they were posted for the kids to see before doing their own
  • Classrooms make a class poster on inclusion
  • Classroom teachers reading books and leading class discussions on inclusion

BUILDING-WIDE

  • Host Aide Appreciation Luncheon for Special Ed aides and building aides
  • Coffee for parents at which students make an inclusion related presentation. Ie. 1st graders sign Pledge of Allegiance in  American Sign Language, 5th graders demonstrate a responsive meeting
  • Panel with teachers discussing how they build an inclusive classroom using differentiated instruction
  • Panel with ELL coordinator, IF, Learning Ctr coordinator
  • Mix it up night for parents – host an event where parents have to sit together based on birth month
  • Parent run project – create a banner for every kid and staff member to help personalize – display prominently
  • Faculty meeting dedicated to inclusion
  • Newsletters from principals/ PTO to highlight ISW

MIDDLE AND HS LEVEL

  • Form a committee including kids  i.e., Respect for Human Differences – help facilitate student led projects
  • Art – Banner signed and decorated by entire community
  • Library – Display books throughout the week related to inclusion

STUDENT DRIVEN

  • Coordinate with cultural clubs, Gay Straight Alliance etc
  • Student led panel discussions: Students and recent graduates with special needs / siblings to talk about their experiences

BUILDING-WIDE

  • Newsletters from principals/ PTO – highlight ISW

Newsletters from Inclusive Schools Network
January 27, 2011

Copy of the Newsletter from Inclusive School Network http://www.inclusiveschools.org/

Inclusive Schools Network News  January 2011
“Supporting Inclusive Education Worldwide”
The Inclusive Schools Network (ISN) is a web-based resource for families, schools, and communities interested in the topic of inclusive education. This network has grown out of Inclusive Schools  Week™, an internationally-recognized, annual event sponsored by Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC). In 2010, ISN will be expanding its capacity to offer new products, conferences, online events, and social networking opportunities.

Inclusive Schools Network News is your source for updates and information about the Inclusive Schools Network, Inclusive Schools Week, and other resources and events related to building more welcoming and supportive schools and communities.
Inclusive Schools Network Event

Tip of the Month

The Knowing-Doing Gap in Inclusive Education
Just over a decade ago, Jeffrey Pfeffer and Robert Sutton authored The Knowing-Doing Gap: How Smart Companies Turn Knowledge into Action. Their point: we know a great deal, are generally well trained, yet despite all of our knowing, we still are not doing what we know should be done. In the words of the authors, the phenomenon of the disconnect between knowledge and action as one of the “great mysteries in organization management: why knowledge of what needs to be done frequently fails to result in action or behavior consistent with that knowledge.” This observation extends to the arena of public education as easily as it does to the Fortune 500 corporations.

Just a few months ago, the Inclusive Schools Network celebrated its 10th anniversary with a theme of “From Awareness to Action.” This is particularly fitting as we move to a new decade yet still recognize that we still have much work to do in realizing the goals of inclusive education within all schools. In the spirit of New Year’s Resolutions, we offer a Knowing-Doing audit questionnaire. You may choose to complete it individually, as a team, as a parent with your child’s teacher or teachers, or as a district level administrative team. Finally, we have provided a simple resolution Commitment Planning form to capture your goals for closing the Knowing-Doing gap in your classroom, school or district.

This month’s tip is generously provided by Frances Stetson, Ph.D., Stetson & Associates, Inc., Houston, Texas.
Featured Resource

Duets and Dialogue: Voices on Inclusive Practices in Our Schools
Duets and Dialogue is a new publication from the Midwest Region of the New York Higher Education Support Center for Systems Change Task Force. This publication is aimed at educators, administrators, inclusion facilitators, and others involved in promoting inclusive practices.

The resource includes ten articles co-authored by higher education faculty, practitioners and parents – all sharing perspectives on supporting inclusive practices. The articles themselves symbolize the “duet” – the perspectives of two or more inclusive educators representing different, but complementary, viewpoints with regard to the advancement of effective inclusive education.

The 108 page publication is free to download from the following link:
www.inclusion-ny.org/duet-dialogue.