Inclusive classroom settings are about much more than academic learning: inclusive environments teach kids with a disability how to model behaviour, participate and develop their “social capital” with children their own age. Teachers also need classroom support to ensure they are working effectively; along with other teaching professionals and educational assistants, effective school leadership is needed to ensure issues are faced and resolved as they arise in a competent manner. Parents must continually take an active role in working with schools to advocate for change. Informal advocacy is always the preferred path forward: partnerships, communication, clarity and a focus on shared positive outcomes. Where informal efforts may fail, Canada’s human rights code serves as a formal backup.
BIO Dr. Gordon L. Porter has more than 35 years of experience with inclusive education in over 40 countries. Most recently he led the development of new policies and guidelines for inclusive education in New Brunswick and The Northwest Territories in Canada. A former Chair of the New Brunswick Human Rights Commission and President of the Canadian Association of Human Rights Agencies, Dr. Porter has served as consultant to the United Nations Human Rights Committee, the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank. He has received a Doctor Honoris Causa from the National Pedagogical University of Peru for his work on inclusive education in that country as well as an Honorary Doctor of Laws from the University of New Brunswick, and numerous other awards. Dr. Gordon Porter was named to the Order of Canada in 2010 and to the Order of New Brunswick in 2013.
For more information on Dr. Porter, please click HERE.