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George Washington University

Publication Date

Spring 2018

Program Name

India: Public Health, Gender, and Community Action


The topic of this study is centered on students with intellectual disabilities; in particular, its focus is on those individuals who have Down syndrome. One of the primary debates revolving around the treatment of people with intellectual disabilities is whether or not they should be educated in separate, special schools. According to the current academic consensus, and the government of India’s new policies, inclusion within mainstream schools is the most beneficial practice for students with Down syndrome to grow socially and academically; however, the perspectives of parents and staff is often left out of the equation when determining the impact of such schemes on local communities. Thus, this paper will utilize these perspectives through a three week period of interviews and observations at a special school located in Navi Mumbai, India. A total of eleven parents and five staff members were consulted. The results point toward aspects of special education that make it necessary in India’s current climate of integration and less specialization. Simultaneously, the findings also indicate how inclusive education needs to change in order to become beneficial for families, who are so often left out of the discussion.


Accessibility | Disability and Equity in Education | Education | Special Education and Teaching


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