Mainstreaming: Handicapped Children in the Classroom

Archive Report

New Education Opportunities

Recent Integration into Public Schools

Handicapped children have been called the country's most oppressed minority. Whether blind, deaf, crippled or retarded, they are the victims of both sympathy and neglect. Although analogies have been made between their situation and that of blacks in the past, it is argued that racial minorities were never as stigmatized or misunderstood as the disabled. Handicapped children “are distributed randomly so that most have able-bodied parents,” explained psychologist John Gliedman. “They are parachuted into an able-bodied world. So there is no community of disabled people in which such a child can grow up, no cultural support system, no accumulated body of wisdom.” Identified by the handicapped role alone, they “are stripped of their social being [and] reduced to ...

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