Michelle Gunderson (right). Photo: Fred Klonsky
From Anthony Cody’s Living in Dialogue.
– Michelle Gunderson is a Chicago teacher, activist and leader in the CTU.
Every child who enters my first classroom is treated with dignity and respect and learning takes place in an atmosphere of joy. Children with special needs are supported through a matrix of services with other professionals. Most of the work, though, is done solely by me, the classroom teacher. I repeat directions, use visual clues, check often for understanding, reduce assignments, provide sensory breaks along with a host of other modifications and accommodations. How is this possible? Because according to Illinois school code there is a limit on the percentage of children with special needs in my class. Without these limits the work becomes impossible.
This is not a matter of school funding or expediency. This is a matter of human capacity. There is only…
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