Students with special needs have disabilities of an intellectual, physical, sensory, emotional, or behavioural nature; or have learning disabilities; or have exceptional gifts or talents.
All students can benefit from an inclusive learning environment that is enriched by the diversity of the people within it. Opportunities for success are enhanced when provincial learning outcomes and resources are developed with regard for a wide range of student needs, learning styles, and modes of expression.
Educators can assist in creating more inclusive learning environments by introducing the following:
An adapted program addresses the learning outcomes of the prescribed curriculum but provides adaptations so the student can participate in the program. These adaptations may include alternative formats for resources (e.g., braille, books-on-tape), instructional strategies (e.g., use of interpreters, visual cues, learning aids), and assessment procedures (e.g., oral exams, additional time). Adaptations may also be made in areas such as skill sequence, pacing, methodology, materials, technology, equipment, services, and setting. Students on adapted programs are assessed using the curriculum standards and can receive full credit.
A modified program has learning outcomes that are substantially different from the prescribed curriculum and specifically selected to meet the student's special needs. For example, a Grade 5 student in language arts may be working on recognizing common signs and using the telephone, or a secondary student could be mapping the key features of the main street between school and home. A student on a modified program is assessed in relation to the goals and objectives established in the student's IEP.
Revised: January 25, 1999
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