In self-contained programs, the students are put in a special surrounding for learning isolated from the other students. In these programs, the students are given high level of support and attention under special education at all times. This is due to the unique nature of their educational needs which often concentrate on enabling them to meet the normal academic standards, developing their socializing capabilities and mannerisms so that they can be integrated into the normal school settings. The students usually have the same educational necessities e.g. all pupil that are talented in an institution will be confined in one learning room for a time, the pupils may be in the same grade level.( Carol Bainbridge, 2008).
In educational terms they are programs that help physically challenged, especially children in academics and other essential skills while for secondary students attention is directed towards their homes, neighborhood and skills related to life community.(Central Kitsap school district). Success doesn’t come by confining the physically challenged in self –contained environment only, it’s the quality of the program in that surrounding that matters.(Mike Muir, 2006). According to central Kitsap school district the beneficiaries are the physically challenged for example those with disabilities in their behavior, serious disabilities, partial disabilities and those that cant hear.
Implementation of self-contained programs
Before students are enrolled in the self contained programs, they are tested to determine if they qualify. Once they join the schools their parents are usually given opportunities to interact with the students and their teachers to see how their learning is carried out. Some of the schools offering self-contained programmes are: Kitsap,Pacific view high school, Community day school, Washington high school, Social adjustment class. Pacific view high school offers “self-contained classroom environment”. there students are assisted to enhance turnout, educational presentation, and also their conduct. Community day school helps students set a trend of educational success while Kitsap offers the following programs: Educational and elementary skills for junior and senior high levels ( Central Kitsap School District). Those who are in secondary Kitsap dwell on home, society, and work related living skills. Kitsap objective is to have students in their program linked to existing agencies that assist the physically challenged in the neighborhood or even get work if possible. Kitsap is helpful to assist institutions to help students that have problems with their behavior to implement programs make many students prosper in their home institution. Kitsap offer “adapted physical education for students with the disabilities”, who are unable to engage in usual normal bodily exercise done often.
The students development through the program is usually evaluated to see how they are fairing. Those who show signs of improvements capability to learn normally are incorporated in the normal learning curriculums progressively.
Challenges faced in self-contained programs
Institution find it hard acting in response to their “hard to teach” unique needs including students that posses traits of behavior challenge.It has been discovered that self-contained programs are not practical, students are left to make decisions on their own , teachers bear no blame on students actions. According to new York youth policy ,the weakest students in school have20 or more absenteeism. Also majority of institutions don’t keep these data therefore are ignorant of this trend. There is inconsistency of data concerning handicapped kids that distort the program of special education.
Benefits of self-contained programs
Through the self-contained programs efforts to avoid dropout have been implemented by national dropout prevention centre by laying down some fundamental techniques e.g. mentoring and tutorial service, learning alternative schooling and after school opportunities”, reducing the number of students per teacher( Mike Muir, 2006). This increases the attention paid to a single student by the teacher.
There are some changes which should be made to improve the quality of self-contained programs. These are discouraging altering data on handicapped pupils, (Education Research Information Centre). Teachers should not give students too much freedom because they can hurt themselves since they don’t understand themselves. The teachers should understand the students to be able to guide the the physically challenged students before they make mistakes. Generally there are calls for all students to be enrolled in inclusive education programs instead of the self contained ones since they tend to perform better that way (Sara Signor, Michael LeBlanc, James McDougal, 2007).
- Carol Bainbridge. About.com. Gifted Children. Self-Contained Classroom. 2008. Web.
- Central Kitsap School District. Self Contained Program. 2007.
- Mike Muir. The Principals’ Partnership. Self-Contained Programs. 2006.
- Sara Signor, Michael LeBlanc, James McDougal. State University of New York at Oswego. Academic Achievement in Self-Contained vs. Inclusive Special Education Classrooms.