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Philosophy of Special Education Paper

Morgan DeWinne

Monmouth University

Philosophy Paper

“See the able, not the label,” means giving students with exceptional needs an endless

amount of opportunities in and outside of the classroom. As a future educator, I promote this

saying every single day, as I am extremely passionate about the field of special education. I have

known my entire life that I wanted to teach, as my love for children and learning grows

constantly. However, it wasn’t until my younger brother was classified of having a disability of

his own that I became more determined to share equal and individualized instruction for all

students. I want to teach special education to ensure the best academic experience to all my

students while praising them for their abilities instead of immobilizing them because of their

classification labels. I believe that through differentiation in my content area of English, full

inclusion in the classroom, and promoting positivity in schools, students with exceptional needs

will receive the best possible education.

In my content area of English, it is vital to differentiate instruction for special needs

learners. Because of curriculum-mandated texts, students with exceptional needs might fall

behind. I believe that differentiation through journaling, reflection, and literature circles will

most benefit students with exceptional needs. Because of the diversity within families, cultures

and previous schools students have attended, delivery of special education must be handled with

care. I believe that differentiation is one of the best ways to do this, as special educators must

accept students from all backgrounds and circumstances to truly love what they do. My

classroom might be the only safe haven that my students have, and I want them to receive

instruction tailored to each of them specifically. I believe that all methods of differentiation must

include all students, so that full inclusion is properly implemented.


While a least restrictive learning environment is mandated under IDEA, I have witnessed

special educators who do not create the most inclusive classroom for their students with special

needs. On the other hand, I have witnessed and implemented accommodations for students with

exceptional needs in the ideal LRE classroom. I believe that implementing assistive technology,

preferential seating, visual aids, and extra time on tests and assignments are accommodations

that every student should have. I believe that it is every educator’s responsibility to honor a

child’s IEP accommodations and modifications in every classroom setting, especially in a co-

teaching scenario, where I would work with another colleague to apply specialized instruction to

students with exceptional needs. That way, students can work towards their learning goals in an

atmosphere of positivity.

There is a negative stigma that falls upon students with exceptional needs: that they are

incapable, or unable. The world must become more accepting of all individuals, and in the

meantime, I believe that promoting positivity and praising small successes in the classroom is a

way that I can constantly grow as a special educator. By attending special education workshops

and seminars to constantly learn more, I can provide guidance to my colleagues, to student

teachers who are the future, and to my students who crave acceptance and a true and fair


Special education is a field full of opportunities to learn and to grow, for students and

educators alike. By implementing differentiation, full inclusion, and promoting positivity,

students with exceptional needs will be taught to the highest degree possible. I believe that

students with exceptional needs must be shown care and love just like any other student, as there

is no such thing as a disability, there are only abilities. Giving all students a life of fulfillment in

the classroom is what will help them throughout their lives to come.


Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). Special Educator Professional Preparation. 2015.

Web. <https://www.cec.sped.org/Standards/Special-Educator-Professional-Preparation-