Introduction to Special Education: Historical and Legal Foundations
This book is about the characteristics and educational needs of exceptional students. It is also about teaching exceptional students—what the teacher and other professionals can do to educate these students to the maximum extent possible. Teaching exceptional students is a challenging, rewarding, and sometimes frustrating endeavor. Through research and continued teaching, we are constantly discovering more and more about the characteristics, capabilities, and educational needs of exceptional students. Similarly, we have learned a great deal about the educational approaches to use with these students. Unfortunately, much of the information regarding the “best” approach to use to meet their educational needs is contradictory and somewhat confusing. Indeed, we may have to accept the fact that there is no single approach, theory, or philosophy that gives us all the answers. Clearly, we must look carefully into the professional literature to determine the approaches, models, and techniques that have been demonstrated to be successful with students who have certain characteristics and educational needs. It also is important to define as precisely as possible those students who are considered exceptional and to determine the number of these students who will receive some type of special education program.
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