Mainstreaming a Child with Epilepsy

Our son has epilepsy and is developmentally slow, but he is in the high/mild range. He has been in a special education class for about four years. With continual help can he be integrated into a regular classroom?

Question:

Special education services are offered to those students who qualify for them. As long as your son shows a need, he may use the services to whatever degree the school staff feels necessary.

There may come a time when the staff feels that he can be mainstreamed into a traditional classroom, but he may still require some supplemental special education services. The only people who can truly answer your question are those teachers and specialists that work with him. They see him on daily basis and can gauge his needs based on his progress.

Perhaps you can request a conference with his teachers to discuss the possibility of your son's integration into a regular classroom. Even if he isn't ready to be fully mainstreamed, it may be possible to mainstream him for one subject, such as math or science. Be frank with the teachers and ask that they be frank with you, too. They can't predict the future, but they can offer some educated opinions about where they see your son in two, five, or seven years.

My other suggestion to you is to involve your son in outside activities. He may enjoy the camaraderie of scouts or the pleasure of learning to play a musical instrument. Help him to develop his interests by finding corresponding activities. The experiences will increase his social circle and will help develop self-esteem. If you are unsure of physical limitations related to his epilepsy, consult his doctor before enrolling him any sports or other physical activities.

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