Education for All Handicapped Children Act 1975

mainstreaming

mainstreaming, in education, practice of teaching handicapped children in regular classrooms with nonhandicapped children to the fullest extent possible; such children may have orthopedic, intellectual, emotional, or visual difficulties or handicaps associated with hearing or learning. The practice is also called inclusion. Mainstreaming has been of increasing interest since the late 1960s in response to a number of factors: research showing that many handicapped students learned better in regular than in special classes; charges that racial imbalances existed in special education classes; and the civil-rights movement with its stress on the rights of the individual. The federal Education for All Handicapped Children Act (1975), which stated that all handicapped children are entitled to a "free and appropriate" education in the "least restrictive environment," has been widely interpreted as supporting the expansion of mainstreaming.

Mainstreaming has worked well with those segments of the special student population whose disabilities are compatible with a classroom setting and is felt in general to better prepare special students socially for life after school. It has also helped other school children gain a greater understanding of those with disabilities. It has been controversial, however, with students who have emotional or behavioral difficulties that may be disruptive to the entire class. In addition, some worry that children with special needs cannot be given adequate attention in an integrated class.

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2014, The Columbia University Press.

Selected full-text books and articles on this topic

Disability, Civil Rights, and Public Policy: The Politics of Implementation
Stephen L. Percy.
University of Alabama Press, 1992
Librarian’s tip: "Civil Rights and Education: The Education for All Handicapped Children Act" begins on p. 55
The Least Restrictive Environment: Its Origins and Interpretations in Special Education
Jean B. Crockett; James M. Kauffman.
Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1999
Librarian’s tip: "Social Origins of the EAHCA" begins on p. 51, and "Federal Legislation: EAHCA/IDEA" begins on p. 74
The Nature of Learning Disabilities: Critical Elements of Diagnosis and Classification
Kenneth A. Kavale; Steven R. Forness.
Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1995
Librarian’s tip: "PL 94-142 Definition and Regulations" begins on p. 62
Legal Standards for an Appropriate Education in the Post-Rowley Era
Osborne, Allan G., Jr.
Exceptional Children, Vol. 58, No. 6, May 1992
PEER-REVIEWED PERIODICAL
Peer-reviewed publications on Questia are publications containing articles which were subject to evaluation for accuracy and substance by professional peers of the article's author(s).
Reflections on a Research Career: One Thing Leads to Another
Keogh, Barbara K.
Exceptional Children, Vol. 65, No. 3, Spring 1999
PEER-REVIEWED PERIODICAL
Peer-reviewed publications on Questia are publications containing articles which were subject to evaluation for accuracy and substance by professional peers of the article's author(s).
Historical Encyclopedia of School Psychology
Thomas K. Fagan; Paul G. Warden.
Greenwood Press, 1996
Librarian’s tip: "Public Law 94-142: Education for All Handicapped Children Act" begins on p. 310
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