Before you start on a journey, it’s often a good idea to take stock of where you are at. What does the school community really think about inclusion and disability at your school?
Between 2013-2016, nearly 7000 individuals at 52 schools used the Social Inc. Annual Inclusion Survey (SIAIS) templates below,which have been based on/derived from Dolmage, M., Young, G., Stuart, H., Specht, J., & Strickland, J. (2009) to support them to make positive changes at their school. Evidence of Effective High School Inclusion: Research, Resources and Inspiration. A research study funded by the Ontario Ministry of Education - Final Report.
Use these tools to assess where you are at. Modify them to suit your requirements. Maybe survey again in another year and see if things have changed once you have identified some things you can do differently in your community. Just taking the survey can open peoples minds to the way things are done…and how they could be.
Survey Monkey provides some handy survey tips here.
This film can be used to introduce Social Inc. to your community.
These films have been made about inclusion by real high schools in 2016.
Pick one that fits your need and use it to spark discussion, reflection and perhaps inspiration for a group at your school to make their own film.
"Disabilities is an umbrella term, covering impairments, activity limitations, and participation restrictions. An impairment is a problem in body function or structure; an activity limitation is a difficulty encountered by an individual in executing a task or action; while a participation restriction is a problem experienced by an individual in involvement in life situations. Thus, disability is a complex phenomenon, reflecting an interaction between features of a person’s body and features of the society in which he or she lives.— World Health Organization, Disabilities"
Awareness modules can be used in year group meetings, roll call or fitted into your curriculum as part of PDHPE - or elsewhere - to encourage and develop awareness. Here we use language that is commonly used to describe difference in our society stemming from the ‘medical’ model: ‘disability.’ However ‘diffability’ may be a more preferable term.
This module consists of two parts: 4 was created by Ingleburn High School (from online resources Ref.: © 2006 Possibilities, Inc ) & 4a created by Model Farms High School (from online resources World Autism Awareness Day 2014.)
Work together with a group to plan an event or campaign to show your school that everyone can be included, and saying ‘Hi’ is a great place to start.
Northern Beaches Secondary College – Cromer Campus 2014
A classic, low cost, high impact event which engaged the whole school and got people talking to each other and about why Say Hi. Students were encouraged to wear yellow mufti and over $280 was raised for Bear Cottage in the process. Music was played and a video was created by a very talented student, Tye Bate. The event was in two phases: the day chalking which was filmed, then the editing of the short film. The video was shown at assembly and prizes and awards were handed out to those groups who made an outstanding contribution. To see the video look up Social Inc. on Facebook 2013 & search Cromer Say Hi.
Materials: chunky chalks, video camera, camera man and participants.
Rosebay Secondary College 2014
Support Unit Teacher Edwin Carter says: ‘We were planning our Say Hi Week and students wanted to come up with a way to really spread the message of social inclusion. After a few ideas, someone suggested Gelato Messina's special flavours be named Say Hi! Everyone loves ice cream (and gelato), so together we wrote an email talking about how important social inclusion for people with disabilities is, and how Messina could help spread that message. We were so excited when they got back to us and let us know that they would be naming a flavour "Say Hi! to cheesecake" in honour of Say Hi week! (and most importantly we had a visit to the local Messina with free tastings of the gelato!)
Impact: High. Positive PR in the school for Social Inc. as the Social Inc. students went out on a desirable excursion to eat awesome gelato.
Model Farms High School 2015
Treasure Hunt tied into Autism Awareness Week
People entering the treasure hunt had to find a buddy to take part with (preferably someone that was new to them.) Music was pumping, students dancing and walking at the same time looking for clues.......lollies galore. Clues and questions ranged from ‘pop’ to those getting people thinking about autism.
Materials: Prizes, prep for 'the hunt' – clues and placement, sound system for atmosphere.
Impact: Impact: High. Great way to generate whole school awareness about something important whilst meeting new people and winning prizes!
Raise the bar and ensure your leadership committees represent the diversity of your community (e.g. is there at least one person with a disability on the SRC?)
Make it the norm, not the exception.
Download the video (.mp4)
This is where you find posters, adverts, checklists, inclusive activity ideas & Principals Commitment to Social Inc.
Ideas for individuals or pairs to spread the word on inclusion. Working in twos or threes is often an easier way to connect with someone else.
Connect with a school that is running Social Inc. now…these schools have been creating change in their school communities since 2013. We’ve given you a suggestion of a first question you could ask them if you’re thinking of implementing Social Inc. at your school…but you could ask them lots of things...
Ask me how we get 10-20 mainstream students coming to our support unit every fortnight.Connect
Ask me about my experience empowering students of all abilities to lead inclusive projects.Connect
International day of people with a disability
On the 3rd December every year - increase public awareness, understanding and acceptance of people with disability and celebrate the achievements and contributions of people with disability.
Nov/Dec - an annual campaign promoting inclusive communities.
MindMatters is a mental health initiative for secondary schools that aims to improve the mental health and wellbeing of young people.
The Bully Project
Tools and resources to provoke empathy, build social and emotional skills and inspire action....the aim to cause a tipping point in society where bullying is no longer accepted and UPSTANDERS prevail bringing an end to bullying in Australia.
projectABLE is a free program for students, offering inspiring, interactive disability awareness and career workshops and workplace experience.
The Inclusive Class
A blog with strategies, tips and information for the inclusive class.
The Duke of Edinburgh award
CPA offers support with this program for students who have a disability.
Transition To Work (TTW)
A CPA program supporting students with disabilities to get ‘work ready.
There are many great TED talks. These are a few that may spark debate.
JUST LIKE YOU
Just Like You is a primary school disability awareness program educating primary school students to develop understanding and inclusion of people with a disability. It is delivered by people with a disability at no cost to primary schools in two 45 min interactive sessions that are mapped to the Australian Curriculum.
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