Integrated Approach In Early Years Setting

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Benefits & challenges to integrated approach in early years setting

What are the key benefits and challenges of an integrated approach to working with children with additional needs and their families in an early years setting?

For decades, the debate surrounding family involvement in the effective upbringing and education of children with special needs has echoed our ears; both at national and local level.

When speaking of additional needs, one may think in terms of disadvantaged children, those living below the poverty line or those with special educational need (Blanden, 2006, pp.6). In simple terms the phrase “additional needs” refers to such children and youngsters who require a tad more than the universally adopted services in order to perform well. The term is not merely limited to children and is recently being used in almost every policy document given its broad focus. It is estimated that the percentage of children who require these additional services accounts for nearly 20-30%. In order to cater to these needs, universal principles and services along with a combination of customized and targeted programs, helps such children to overcome their barriers and to deal with their obstacles effectively .

The aim of this paper is to provide a critical analysis on the benefits and benefits and challenges being faced by schools, educationalists, practitioners and parents of such children who have additional needs. While the implementation of an integrated approach in education is generally deemed as solution to most of these issues; there are several challenges that arise and a host of limitations are present to date that need to be addressed. This paper provides a discussion and a set of recommendations on this issue.

An integrated approach in this regard is used not only to help such children learn better but also to help grow their self esteem, enhance their emotional resilience, adopt social behaviors and all in all grow into a successful individual (Lin Whitfield Consultancy, 2008, Pp. 43). The biggest benefit of this approach is that helps narrow the achievement gap for these children, through the active participation of multi-agency teams along with their parents.

The SEN code of practice was first introduced in the year 2002 with the aim of providing proper education for children in their early years. It has also been made compulsory on the local schools and educational institutions to cater to the service of such students and to provide them with auxiliary aid. This legislation was introduced in the year 2012 (Crozier, 2012, Pp.2). . The Government has recently introduced the Children and Families Bill which highlights all the necessary duties and requirements for children with special educational needs. The policies and regulations surrounding these educational needs is also found in draft regulations and draft guidance as enlisted in the code of practice. This relates to the Education Act of 1996 and the Education Regulations of 2001. Much recently, the launch of consultation on the draft policies in October also provides a more keen insight into the regulations ...
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