Friday Features: December 15, 2017

Literacy and Numeracy in Manitoba Schools: Making a Plan

Manitoba Education and Training is inviting all Manitobans to engage in an important three-day collaborative process to develop a long-term provincial literacy and numeracy strategy.  It’s full days from January 9-11.  Whatever the strategy looks like, it has to be accessible to all kinds of learners.
Anyone (educators, parents, community members) who is interested is invited to participate.

Talking with Kids With ASD:  Guidance for Family Gatherings

Stephanie Harvey is a local SLP who loves to write, and in her article Ten Tips for Talking to Children This Holiday Season, she offers practical suggestions for friends and family on how to connect with children without overwhelming them.

Inclusive Education: A Presentation by Gordon Porter

Gordon Porter is the director of Inclusive Education Canada.  On December 8, he spoke to a gathering of interested professionals and parents about why school inclusion is still not fully developed and understood, and where we might go from here.  Some points made:

  • In 2007, Canada and all its provinces, along with many other countries, signed on to the UN’s Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which stated member countries “shall ensure an inclusive education system. (Article 24).  We’re committed to this.
  • Every provincial ministry says it’s goal is to be inclusive…but accountability for schools is still a problem.
  • Inclusion does not mean every child in the classroom all the time.  It’s silly to think that there won’t be times that some children will benefit from some individual learning, or time to regroup.  But alternatives have to be for the benefit of the student, not the convenience of the teacher or school.  Pullout and segregated programs are far too often used to make teaching “easier.”
  • What’s social capital?  It’s the value of our social connections. Who we know determines our social life, our opportunities to be in the community, and even opportunities for employment.  We all need it.  People with disabilities need it more than most.  Inclusive education is an essential way to get it.

“The best predictor of school success is who you are educated with.”
– Douglas Willms

Thanks to Education Solutions Manitoba and Barrier Free Manitoba for hosting this event!

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