When you drop your children off at daycare, kinder or school, you assume that the people caring for them will guide them through their day, teach them new things, care about their wellbeing. You place your trust in the teacher’s ability to ensure they are included, that their needs are being met.
This trust becomes vital when you have a non-verbal child with a disability. In many ways, you have to cast aside your own fears and allow someone else to meet your child’s needs.
So what happens when that child is being purposely excluded? When they are being treated as though they are a disease and made to spend most of their time in a passageway or outside in the cold and rain. The other children are encouraged to not include them in their games, or even go near them for that matter. No part of the curriculum is being adapted to meet their needs. In fact, it seems as though the child is actively being excluded.
No, this isn’t happening to us. Let me be very clear about that. Ryley has a wonderful time at school and I am confident his needs are being met and he is well cared for!
But somewhere, right now, that is exactly what is happening to a little boy.
Outrageous! I can hear you all think. Surely that kind of thing doesn’t happen to kids with disabilities. Especially ones that aren’t even school age. Surely in the current social and political climate that we live in, that kind of thing doesn’t actually happen.
Yes. Yes, it does.
Am I doing something about it? Bloody oath I am.
Will there be an investigation, a ministerial perhaps? Oh hell yes there will be.
Obviously, as a social worker and a mother of a child with a disability I have a fire in my belly like none other. But given that I work for a disability organization, it is being taken all the way.
I still can’t believe a child is so obviously being discriminated against. Who does that to children? Who does that to children with a disability even more so?