Cultural and social factors play an important role in education. Communities, parents, teachers, and peers all contribute to a child's learning and understanding of the world. In pursuit of total inclusion of students with disabilities, it is not enough for teachers and caregivers to value diversity and provide appropriate support. Parents and community members also must help children feel accepted and included in day-to-day encounters. Perhaps most important, the values of respect and inclusion should be instilled in typically developing children. Children with and without special needs should be exposed early and often to the vast diversity of abilities and experiences they will encounter in others. It is during early childhood that their characters and values are forming. In this article, the author explores ways that the Emirate of Abu Dhabi can establish a thoughtful, inclusive education system through parent and teacher education, sound public policy, and activities for young children that celebrate diversity and respect for differences.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Management of Technology and Innovation