Core unit 3 – Making the pre-school setting a supportive and safe environment.
The 1981 Warnock Report and Education Act highlighted the concept of children having special educational needs. This means each setting needs to have an inclusion policy that states that all children and their parents are included regardless of there race, religion or disability. Our admissions policy reflects this.
The UN Convention on the rights of the child (1989) added to the Warnock Report by stating that disabled children have the right to be included in mainstream education, allowing the child to achieve the fullest possible social integration and individual development. The ramifications for settings include providing an environment that is inclusive and accessible to all. The Special Needs Code of Practice (2001) provides practical advice for settings on the statutory requirements. This code became effective in January 2002 and from that date any planning settings undertake must have regard to it.
In 1994 the UNESCO Salamanca Statement was produced which represented a world wide consensus to endorse an approach of inclusive schools. It called for inclusive education to be the norm and adopted a Framework for Action which said ordinary schools should include all children.
The Special Educational Needs and Disability Act (SENDA), which consolidated the 1995 Disability Discrimination Act, the Sex Discrimination Act 1975 and the Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000 are all represented in our equal opportunities policies to ensure that all children and their families are treated equally in our setting.
In 2003 the government brought out a green paper called Every Child Matters. This paper set out the government’s commitment to improve the outcomes for all children and identify barriers for children with SEN and disabilities.
Several other pieces of legislation followed in the next few years which helped to make clear the duties of all types of settings and Local Authorities, including the 2004 Children’s Act which built on the previous 1989 edition.
2006 brought the Common Assessment Framework (CAF), which all local authorities will work towards. The CAF is meant to improve the partnership between all relevant agencies and therefore provide a more effective way of identifying the additional needs of the child at an earlier stage.
2008 sees the introduction of the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage, which has been designed by the Government to provide a comprehensive guide to settings on all the legislation, policies and procedures required by law.
My pre-school’s policies include the above legislation to ensure that we are providing an inclusive environment for all children in our care.
Every child is an individual and should be given the opportunity to thrive in a safe environment and have the chance to fulfil their full potential. Each child should be valued for who they are regardless of their ethnic or cultural background, linguistic ability, religious and family background, physical or mental ability, gender and sexuality or financial situation.
Every setting should strive to promote a child’s confidence and self esteem by providing an Anti-bias and Inclusive curriculum which should incorporate the positive intent to be multicultural and anti discriminatory. It should at the same time provide an inclusive education which takes into account the children and their families and the community in which the setting is situated. Promoting a sense of belonging and valuing each child’s contributions are paramount and it is now recognised that inclusive practices are a key way in which we can try and help create a fairer society in which all members are equally valued.
There are many ways a setting can promote an inclusive environment, most importantly by having an unbiased and inclusive attitude to all the children in...