As the parent of a child with a disability, one of the hardest decisions you may have to make is whether or not to put your child into mainstream schooling. Each child is different and their specific disability, personality and emotional intelligence will all be huge factors in this decision. Also, as a parent or caregiver, nobody knows your child as well as you do, so ultimately you’re the most qualified person to make this decision. Below are some of the pros and cons to consider during your decision-making process:
Helps to learn life skills
A mainstream school or classroom is a more accurate simulation of the ‘real world’ that children will experience after they leave mainstream education. For children with a disability, this will help them to adapt to the kinds of situations they will be in later in life. Without mainstream schooling, children with a disability may struggle to cope in a job where they are all of a sudden surrounded by people who perhaps don’t understand their situation and are also being held to a different set of expectations.
Mainstream schooling can massively benefit an NDIS participant’s social skills and the way in which they interact with others around them. Some disabilities limit social skills and naturally, the only true way that social skills can be developed is by being in a social environment. What’s more, some intellectual disabilities allow children to learn social skills through imitation, making a mainstream classroom the optimum social environment for them.
Children may be inspired to challenge themselves
In some cases, studies have shown that children with certain disabilities thrive more in a mainstream school because they become inspired to push themselves to reach the level of those around them. This is almost like another form of imitation. Sometimes, when children with a disability see children around them engaging in certain kinds of studies or activities they challenge themselves in a way that they wouldn’t even know how to do were they in specialised education.
A lack of specialised services
A child with a disability often requires specialised attention or teaching services in order to learn properly. Often an intellectual disability can prevent children from learning in the same ways that most children learn and how most teachers are trained to teach. Mainstream schooling may lead to NDIS participants becoming hindered in their academic progress because the system has not been tailored to their needs.
Children may feel inadequate
Rather than helping your child to feel motivated or inspired as we discussed above, a mainstream school may end up having the opposite effect. There have been cases where children with disabilities have become withdrawn and unmotivated due to feelings of inadequacy, isolation or abnormality when comparing themselves with the other children around them. This could not only have a negative impact on their education but also on their mental health.
At Bespoke Lifestyles, we are an NDIS provider committed to helping you and your child build the kind of lifestyle that suits your needs and abilities. We don’t believe in a one-size-fits-all solution which is why we are here to encourage, support and empower you every step of the way. To learn more, get in touch with us or become a subscriber today!