Inclusion and Me
Brandon Aughton writes about what inclusion has meant for him as a Disabled child.
From a young age I knew that I wanted to be in mainstream education. I didn’t like the concept of being away from home and not being with my family. That was the biggest thing I didn’t like when I was little.
I used to meet other families who had a disabled child. Mum met them for coffee and a chat. I played with the children. I noticed that when their children started school I didn’t see them again. They disappeared and that scared me and it still does.
There were lots of discussions about which school I should attend and lots of reasons why they would benefit me and be less hassle to everyone else. There would be physiotherapy, speech and language therapy and special education available for me and the classes would be small.
On the other hand I would have less time with my family and I wouldn’t know my neighbours. As I would need to travel to school my friends would live far away and I might be lonely.
Now I have left school and go to college I can look back and see that there are lots of things that worked and were successful and some that weren’t. I now have more choice. This may be because I’m older or maybe people’s perspective of Inclusion has developed over time and it is very different to previous ideology.
Inclusion is more important to me now. I’m much more independent and have more understanding. I want to be included in decision making about life and the world. I want to make my own decisions even if the results are disastrous.