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Inclusive education: Interview with an educator
There is much talk about inclusive education these days and a teacher education institute in Jaipur gave the assignment to pupil teachers to organise interviews with some local retired educators to get a hang of the concept and acquire the skill of interviewing as a method of accessing information.

A neighbourhood young girl who is doing her teacher training course from a local college approached me, as since after my retirement I had become a freelancing educational consultant. She asked me three questions to make it a two-minute interview. The interview has been given here in the question (Q) and response (R) format.

Q1: Many child rights activists and educators are advocating for inclusive education. What is inclusive education all about?

R1: Inclusive education is that mode of education which respects diversity among learners and children of varied abilities to learn together and socialize by accommodating their individual learning needs.

Q2: But why it should be done?

A2: Since it is the right of every child to be accepted and provided equal learning opportunity with other children. But, equality does not mean similarity, rather it means the education as per the needs of each child. Research has proved that inclusive education has both academic benefits and leads to better psycho-social advantages and enhanced rehabilitation of differently-abled children.

Q3: But seems to be tough proposition, how can it be achieved?

R3: There is nothing tough and impossible for human beings. It can be done with proper pre-service training, induction training, in-service training and teacher support system. The teachers need to become method masters to implement differentiated learning techniques and cooperative learning techniques.

She thanked and said that if our training institutes prepares us well for inclusive education, it would become possible for us to implement this mode of education which is worth it. However, it does not require two sets of teacher training institutes, one for special education, another for general education in that case.

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