I hope that when I finish this project that I will be more aware of the history of special needs in Ireland in Ireland and what special needs means. Also I hope that by carrying out this activity that I will become more aware of the needs of children and adults that have special needs. I also hope by reasearching the disability that I will become more aware of children needs with this disability in the future. Special needs refers to a range of needs often caused by a medical, physical, mental or developmental condition or disability.
Special needs can also include general learning disabilities, emotional and behavioural disturbance, language and communication difficulties and disorders physical and sensory disabilities.. Sometimes these needs are found as children are delayed in meeting milestones or children been. diagnosed at birth with a disability. History of special needs Ireland.
Special needs in Ireland has changed in the last century. In the early 1990’s all the education was carried out by the religious orders.
In 1924 the Dept. of Education was established, but the education of children with special needs was not approved as it was considered as their needs were considered medical rather than educational. Then in 1947 St Vincent’s home for the mentally Defective children was established. This school believed that children with special needs should attend a school for children with special needs rather than being merged with normal children. In 1945 Nancy Jordan joined the staff at St Ultans infant hospital where she set up the first Montessori class in the hospital.
In 1956 she set up her first class for emotionally disturbed children. In 1961 she became the principal of Benincasa special school, it was the first school to adapt the Montessori method. It was only then in 1965 that legislation was amendented to state rule 27 that recognition may be granted to schools which provided recognition to schools which provide primary education for the various types of physically or mentally handicapped children.
In 1978 a committee was established in Britain to look into the education of handicapped children and young children this report was known as the Warnick report. The Warnick report established the importance of inclusion to maximise children learning, Differential needs prior to this report all children with special needs were in the one classroom rather than looking at their educational needs and made aware Bullying: Children with special needs are prone to be bullied following this report the Education Act 1981 was brought into legislation. This Act changed the view of special needs in Ireland. Prior to these act children with special needs were categorised as children with needs rather than their specific disability. In 1993 the Special education review influenced the development of inclusion. This was the first review dealing with the broad range of disabilities, following this report the special education needs provision was set up to cater for all children educational needs. It called for the integration of children with special needs into mainstream school.
In 1998 the education act was established under this act everyone is entitled to appropriate education and support services if necessary. The State now has an obligation to provide for the education of every person in the state. Insuring access and equality for persons with disability. The rights of parents to send a child to the school of their choice. Ensuring that the education system is accountable to students their students and the state. The act also instructs the education welfare services and education inspectors to ensure that children with disabilities are referred for assessment of their SEN (Special Education Needs) also have their SEN identified and diagnosed and receive treatment. In the Act the government gave the first definition of disability in Ireland. The Act also defines support services, as the services which the state has provided for the needs of students with disabilities these include. Over the past ten years there have been a number of key legislative developments in education for people with special educational needs which I will list below. In 2004 the The Epsen act was set up it recognises that there a four different types of disabilities: Physical, sensory, Mental health and learning disabilities.
The Act provides for the needs for educational plans for students with disabilities in a mainstream school. The act provides children with disabilities are entitled to be educated in a mainstream school, they have the same rights to be educated. Provides for the greater involvement of parents in the education of their children. The act established the national council for special education NCSE. The HSE have a part in the education of people with special educational needs. There is also an appeals system where parents can appeal decisions made about the education of people with special needs. Under the Epsen act all children with special educational needs should be provided with an Individual education plan and this plan be implemented in a classroom setting not individually. Before IEP is established the school needs to have confirmed a child special Education needs by Identification: the child is known to principal as needing extra help in certain area of school work The principal takes in-school practicable measures to meet the child’s needs If all the above needs have been meet if the child is still not benefiting from the programme in the classroom then child needs to be accessed Special education needs is confirmed with an assessment.
In 2005 the disability act was established. Under the act Disability is listed as anyone with substantial restriction in the capacity of the person to carry out a profession, business or occupation in the state or to participate in social or cultural life by reasons of physical, sensory, mental health or intellectual impairment. Under this act People with disabilities are entitled to 1.Have their health and educational needs assessed 2.Have individual services statements drawn up, setting out what services they are entitled too.3,Access independent complaints and appeals procedure4.Access buildings and public services employment5.Access of needs. Following all the legislation that was brought into place the right of children with special needs were improved and the support. Following all this legislation there is now many resources in place in mainstream school to help with children with special needs, starting with a Special education needs organiser SENO this person main role is to liaise with parent, teacher’s and the Dept of education and links in with the HSE.
There is approxiamelty 80 SENO’s in Ireland. NEPS is the national education psychological service supports the personal, social and educational development of all children through application of psychologist theory. NEPs are responsible for the identifying children educational needs. There are now special education teacher in schools they include learning support teacher works with children whose ability in basic academic skills such as reading or maths fall below the 10th percentile., resource teacher provides support to those children who have special education needs classified as more severe. Visiting teacher for blind and deaf, language support teacher, support teacher works with children with behavioural issues. SNA special needs assistant assist in the care of pupils with disabilities in an educational context. As you can see form reading this that Special needs has changed a lot over the last century.