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1. Develop the case study report using the required structure below. The purpose of the case study report is to demonstrate your ability to apply principles and concepts of special education to a practical situation.

Part 1: Evaluation of Inclusive Education

?Discuss inclusion in contemporary Australian educational contexts (including a definition of terms)
?Establish the context for this case study – year level, school and class demographics, teaching area (if relevant)
?Consider how these inclusive education policies and practices can support the inclusion of the case study student and meet the needs of other stakeholders within the educational context – including the parents, community, school staff and peers

Part 2: Profile of strengths/needs

?Discuss the student’s background in relation to both family and school contexts
?Consider the type and nature of the student’s disability and impacts this may have on all areas of education – academic, social, emotional and physical
?Consider the individual student’s particular strengths, challenges and needs and the way these can be supported within the educational context

Part 3: Identification of assessment and data collection methods

?Consider the additional information needed to inform decision-making and instruction for the student.
?Discuss appropriate assessment and data collection methods that would be used to gather this information

Part 4: Identification and analysis of appropriate short term goals and support strategies

?Identify at least 2 appropriate short term goals for the individual student
?Discuss appropriate educational strategies, differentiation /adjustments and resources that may be used to support the student in achieving these learning goals
?Consider the expected outcomes of these goals and approaches with regards to the student’s academic, social, emotional and physical development and learning

Part 5: Presentation of proposed program

?Prepare a document where you will provide details of the proposed program of learning for the student to the parent and/or other support staff
?This document will use the ‘Learner Profile’ format provided and should include a summary of the information presented in the report (there should be no new information included in the learner profile)

Concept of Educational Inclusiveness in the Australian Context

The educational phenomenon of ‘Inclusiveness’ in Australia, is not a relatively new concept, and was formulated originally as an attempt to impart equality in the deliverance of education for students presented with various symptoms of disability. However, with the recent entrance of a number of children and youngsters in the educational context of Australia, belonging to a variety of diverse ethnic and cultural groups, the concept of educational inclusiveness in the Australian context, has undergone broadening, with an aim to provide optimum education to all students, irrespective of discrimination (Anderson & Boyle, 2015).

The following paragraphs of this report, will aim to discuss the concept of educational inclusiveness in the context of a child with additional psychological and academic requirements. The report will highlight the case study of Hunter, a child suffering from Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder, his various educational needs, an assessment of goals required to fulfil the differential objectives along with a brief discussion on the possible educational outcomes expected from this evaluation.

The academic concept of ‘Inclusiveness’ in education, is often misinterpreted due to the current lack in appropriate and clearly specified definitions and policies related to it. Nevertheless, as opined by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization, a school or educational setting can only be labelled as inclusive, if its educational curriculum remain equal for students belonging to all communities. However, as noted during its conception, educational inclusiveness majorly focusses on students with disabilities, as stated by the UN Convention of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Sharma, Loreman & Macanawai, 2016). At present, the educational settings in Australia has witnessed an infiltration of students belonging to various ethnic and diversity backgrounds. Thus, educational inclusiveness in the Australian context, implies imparting education and enabling participation of students, irrespective of their culture, ethnicity or race, as stated by the New South Wales Quality Teaching Model (Carrington et al., 2015).

The selected case study, is that of a student named Hunter, who is 8 years old, but it studying in Grade 1, as reported belonging two years beneath the required grade level. As evident from the case study, it seems Hunter has displayed considerable aggression and misconduct in his primary grade classes of reading and writing, with the teacher in question and also with his group of classmates. Apart from the primary subjects of mathematics, reading, writing, social studies and sciences, the school also presents a recreational area as evident from Hunter’s display of aggression amongst his classmates in the playground.

Case Study of Hunter: An Overview

In the Australian context, for the purpose of educational inclusiveness in the case study of Hunter, the school is required to adhere to the Disability Standards of Education (2005), which specify the legal framework which Hunter’s teachers must abide by, that is, the Disability Discrimination Act. Through this educational policy, Hunter’s school can obtain funding for the purpose of his education through exhibition of additional services such as counselling sessions, speech, occupational and physiotherapy, which will benefit the unique educational needs of Hunter (Hardy & Woodcock, 2015). Further, there will be greater awareness of Hunter’s mental condition of ADHD amongst his classmates and fellow teachers, which will help them to be considerate and empathetic towards his needs. This can be done through implementation of a ‘Program for Students with Disabilities’. The teachers can further follow up Hunter’s progress and disseminate the information to his parents, who will now be aware of his specialised needs required to be fulfilled at school, as well at home (Davies, Elliott & Cumming, 2016).

As evident from the case study, Hunter’s academic background is detrimental, considering his decreased reading and motor skills. Further, he displays a relatively hostile background with his classmates, as evident in his display of violence when not considered a part of peer groups. Hunter also displays a background of mistrust with his teacher, considering her to treat him without fairness, resulting in acts of violence and aggression. While Hunter seems to display a positively emotional background with his parents, the problem lies with his mother living in denial with his mental condition, due to the stereotyped stigma attached, resulting in lack of required treatment for Hunter.

The disability suffered by Hunter is Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder, and it will impact the various fields of his life in the following ways:

  • Academic:Children with this disability, like Hunter, often present specified learning shortcomings, highlighted here in the situation of reading and fine motor skills like writing. This results in a detrimental impact in child’s academics, in the form of reduced performance in examinations, resulting in educational failure (Sjöwal et al., 2017).
  • Social:A child with this disorder often displays feelings of isolation and mistrust, leading to misunderstandings in relationships between friends and family. This impacts the social life in the form of rejection received by near and dear ones (Marshall et al., 2014).
  • Physical:The child in question displays constant restlessness with frequent activities like running, jumping, fidgeting, misplacement of objects and squirming, with avoidance to relax or sit in stillness (Hoza et al., 2015).
  • Emotional:Due to the resultant lack of inclusion and affection from friends and family, this disorder negatively impacts the emotional development of the child, in the form of feelings of low confidence, low self-esteem and a need to isolate oneself (Wei, Yu & Shaver, 2014).

As evident in the case study of Hunter, one of his major strengths is his willingness to socialise and make friends. However, it seems that a lack of awareness considering his mental condition, results in mistreatment from his teachers and friends. Hence, there is a need to impart education and awareness considering Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, which will help his friends and teachers to recognise his differential educational requirements. Reduced reading and motor skills are some of his challenges, which can be overcome if teachers organize specialised activities for him such as craft and art classes, or building models which have been proven to result in improvement (Ofiesh, Moniz & Bisagno, 2015). There is an emotional need for Hunter to feel included, understood and loved amongst friends and teachers. Hence, the professionals in his educational settings must learn to engage in empathetic conversation using simple study instructions instead of their multiple or complex counterparts, resulting in improvement of his mental disability (Hagaman & Casey, 2016).

Educational Inclusiveness for Hunter in the Australian Context

For the purpose of decision-making and instructions required for the treatment and formulation of educational needs of Hunter, there is need to obtain additional information. There should be clinical inspections conducted in order to identify and assess for the presence of any impairments in listening and sight along with monitoring Hunter’s development of fine and gross motor skills adequate for his age, as an indicator for the possibility of retardation at neuromuscular levels (Power et al., 2017). Additional information would include conducting a physical examination of Hunter, in order to detect for any disorders developed congenitally. Children with this mental disorder exhibit several comorbid conditions such as autistic behaviours, disorders of conduct, intellectual disability and disabilities associated with cognition and linguistic development (Jensen & Steinhausen, 2015). Hence, assessments must be carried out for Hunter in order to acquire these additional information apart from the ones already highlighted in the case study.

For the purpose of obtaining the above information concerning Hunter suffering from Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, a number of assessment tools will be required to collect the required data. One of the most essential assessment tools which can be used to assess this condition is Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder, 5th Edition, formulated by the American Psychiatric Association in the year 2013. The criteria is in the form of a checklist outlining symptoms associated with hyperactivity, impulsivity and inattention, which Hunter’s parents and teachers can use upon observation of his behavioural and academic symptoms (Vitola et al., 2017). Additional assessment tools include the usage of interviews which can be conducted amongst Hunter’s teachers and parents where they would recall exhibition or occurrences of symptoms characteristic of his mental condition. Further assessment tools would involve the act of classroom observation by a notable educational psychologist who would careful observe the behaviours and symptoms exhibit by Hunter, pertaining to this academic performance and relationships amongst classmates and teachers. Hunter’s teachers may also be involved in his assessment and data collection procedures where they may outline the behaviours exhibited by him, in the form of completion of a structured questionnaire (Minder et al., 2018).

The following two short term goals can be outlined for Hunter, in accordance to his mental disability in the educational settings:

  • Improvement in school grades, reading and writing skills.
  • Exhibition of politeness and kindness, resulting in improved relationships amongst teachers as well as classmates.

For the purpose of enhancing the relationships Hunter has with teachers and students, the teacher may be required to utilise additional educational strategies. Since, Hunter is often easily distracted, he may seated in the front row or somewhere away from the classroom doors and windows, which can pose as potential distractions. The teacher must consider to talk positively with Hunter, using empathetic communication strategies such as greeting Hunter by his name and creating a bulletin board, where Hunter’s drawings or attempts in writings can be displayed with other students, as a token of appreciation for this improvements and trials. The teacher along with the classmates, must ensure continuously providing Hunter with positive feedback for his attempts followed by empathetic conversation during misconduct, in order to improve his self-esteem resulting in feelings of inclusiveness and social confidence (Hart et al., 2017).

Assessment of Educational Needs of Hunter

For the purpose of improvement of Hunter’s academic performance and enhancement in his school grades, there will be a need for the teacher to utilise additional educational strategies. Since Hunter often exhibits difficulties in reading, the teacher can note down simple information concerning the benefits one can possess during participation of the same, and read it aloud for every student of the class. Consequently, the teacher may use educational strategies such as various pictorial information or colourful charts which would attractively represent the importance of reading or any educational information for the matter, and hence help in arousing eagerness and enthusiasm in Hunter (Hamilton & Astramovich, 2016). Hunter displays decreased performance in fine motor skills such as writing or drawing. In such situations, the teacher can conduct separate handwriting tests where Hunter may be allowed to practice. Often children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity disorder often exhibit difficulties in retention of complex or multiple information sources. Hence, in the situation of Hunter, the teacher may formulate and use simple worksheets with less instructions, divided in to segments, which he can perform with ease. Most importantly, classmates and teachers concerned with Hunter, must engage in continuously motivating and appreciating his efforts in order to increase his confidence (Anderson, Watt & Shanley, 2017).

  • Academic and Learning:With implementation of the above strategies, it is expected that Hunter will develop an interest in reading, along with increased focus in the educational material taught. It is also expected that Hunter’s handwriting and school grades will improve due to usage of academic material tailor made to suit his needs.
  • Social:It is expected that Hunter’s sense of isolation will reduce with exhibition of kindness while talking to friends and teachers.
  • Physical:It is expected that Hunter will display reduced distraction and aggression, and increased stillness during conductance of educational activities.
  • Emotional:It is expected that Hunter’s sense of confidence and self-esteem will increases along with a feeling of trust and positivity during communication with his friends and teachers.

Conclusion

Hence, it can be observed that Hunter is suffering from a mental disorder of Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder, which has negatively impacted his social, emotional and academic life. Upon observation and development of this report, it can concluded that the need of the hour is to implement and execute appropriate policies of educational inclusiveness in the respective school settings, for imparting awareness concerning the mental disability affecting Hunter. Considering the need for inclusiveness in academic surroundings, the concerned teachers associated with Hunter, must design customised educational strategies which will aid Hunter in the improvement of his academic performance along with development of healthy, cordial and trustworthy relationships with his fellow classmates.

References

Anderson, D. L., Watt, S. E., & Shanley, D. C. (2017). Ambivalent attitudes about teaching children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties, 22(4), 332-349.

Anderson, J., & Boyle, C. (2015). Inclusive education in Australia: rhetoric, reality and the road ahead. Support for Learning, 30(1), 4-22.

Carrington, S., Saggers, B., Adie, L., Zhu, N., Gu, D., Hu, X., ... & Mu, G. M. (2015). International representations of inclusive education: How is inclusive practice reflected in the professional teaching standards of China and Australia?. International Journal of Disability, Development and Education, 62(6), 556-570.

Evaluation of Goals for Hunter

Davies, M., Elliott, S. N., & Cumming, J. (2016). Documenting support needs and adjustment gaps for students with disabilities: Teacher practices in Australian classrooms and on national tests. International journal of inclusive Education, 20(12), 1252-1269.

Hagaman, J. L., & Casey, K. J. (2016). Understanding and supporting the academic needs of students with adhd. SPECIALUSIS UGDYMAS/SPECIAL EDUCATION, 1(34), 9-50.

Hamilton, N. J., & Astramovich, R. L. (2016). Teaching strategies for students with ADHD: Findings from the field. Education, 136(4), 451-460.

Hardy, I., & Woodcock, S. (2015). Inclusive education policies: Discourses of difference, diversity and deficit. International Journal of Inclusive Education, 19(2), 141-164.

Hart, K. C., Fabiano, G. A., Evans, S. W., Manos, M. J., Hannah, J. N., & Vujnovic, R. K. (2017). Elementary and middle school teachers’ self-reported use of positive behavioral supports for children with ADHD: A national survey. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 25(4), 246-256.

Hoza, B., Smith, A. L., Shoulberg, E. K., Linnea, K. S., Dorsch, T. E., Blazo, J. A., ... & McCabe, G. P. (2015). A randomized trial examining the effects of aerobic physical activity on attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder symptoms in young children. Journal of abnormal child psychology, 43(4), 655-667.

Jensen, C. M., & Steinhausen, H. C. (2015). Comorbid mental disorders in children and adolescents with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in a large nationwide study. ADHD Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorders, 7(1), 27-38.

Marshall, S. A., Evans, S. W., Eiraldi, R. B., Becker, S. P., & Power, T. J. (2014). Social and academic impairment in youth with ADHD, predominately inattentive type and sluggish cognitive tempo. Journal of abnormal child psychology, 42(1), 77-90.

Minder, F., Zuberer, A., Brandeis, D., & Drechsler, R. (2018). A Review of the Clinical Utility of Systematic Behavioral Observations in Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Child Psychiatry & Human Development, 49(4), 572-606.

Ofiesh, N., Moniz, E., & Bisagno, J. (2015). Voices of University Students with ADHD about Test-Taking: Behaviors, Needs, and Strategies. Journal of Postsecondary Education and Disability, 28(1), 109-120.

Power, T. J., Watkins, M. W., Anastopoulos, A. D., Reid, R., Lambert, M. C., & DuPaul, G. J. (2017). Multi-informant assessment of ADHD symptom-related impairments among children and adolescents. Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, 46(5), 661-674.

Sharma, U., Loreman, T., & Macanawai, S. (2016). Factors contributing to the implementation of inclusive education in Pacific Island countries. International Journal of Inclusive Education, 20(4), 397-412.

Sjöwall, D., Bohlin, G., Rydell, A. M., & Thorell, L. B. (2017). Neuropsychological deficits in preschool as predictors of ADHD symptoms and academic achievement in late adolescence. Child Neuropsychology, 23(1), 111-128.

Vitola, E. S., Bau, C. H. D., Salum, G. A., Horta, B. L., Quevedo, L., Barros, F. C., ... & Grevet, E. H. (2017). Exploring DSM-5 ADHD criteria beyond young adulthood: phenomenology, psychometric properties and prevalence in a large three-decade birth cohort. Psychological medicine, 47(4), 744-754.

Wei, X., Yu, J. W., & Shaver, D. (2014). Longitudinal effects of ADHD in children with learning disabilities or emotional disturbances. Exceptional Children, 80(2), 205-219.

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