In 2009 the Peel DSB launched a 3 year pilot project to integrate students with developmental disabilities into secondary schools: at Erindale SS, Harold Braithwaite SS and last year at Louise Arbour SS. The student’s academic program is modified and they do not earn credits. Students gain academic, social, and life skills being integrated into all aspects of regular high school life.
The Inclusion Program at Erindale SS
- We have 2 classrooms that are the students “home base,” rooms 107 and 109.
- The grade 9/10’s and 12’s are in room 107 and the grade 11’s are in room 109.
- Our office is across from both of these rooms, room 112A called "School Success Office (x436).
- 4 year fully integrated DD Resource Program
- Students gain academic skills, experiential learning, social and life skills being integrated into all aspects of regular high school life
- Students follow a regular high school time table/course compliment advancing with their grade cohort
- Students move to transition program (work experience) when finished
- No credits granted and no marks given
- Students working toward a “Certificate of Accomplishment”
WHAT MAKES THE ERINDALE INCLUSION PROGRAM UNIQUE?
- Fully integrated program; 3 out of 4 classes with mainstream students with 1 withdrawal class (GLE) with peer group
- Access to a full high school experience; members of classes, school events/activities, clubs etc.
- Students are part of the Erindale community as “fully fledged” Erindale students
- Follow a regular high school timetable and course compliment for each grade level
- Students advance with their grade cohort (year 1 = grade 9, year 2 = grade 10, year 3 = grade 11, year 4 = grade 12)
- Opportunities to build camaraderie with grade cohort because of shared experiences in classes and school activities
- Access to a work experience program (Get your FLEECE on!)
- Access to high school subject departments and staff expertise
- Exposure to all subject areas and unique learning opportunities that they may not get elsewhere; i.e., participating in science labs (dissection) and in school drama productions
- Learning opportunities that broaden knowledge base, develop thinking skills and challenge students
GOALS OF PROGRAM
Developing Academic Skills:
- Students have 3 out of 4 classes integrated
- Students in integrated classes work on a variety of skills; listening, note taking, test taking, group work, etc.
- Students have a GLE class with their peers in the program in withdrawal setting; work on literacy, numeracy, functional academics, personal and social development
- Students work on core skills/functional academics ranging from kindergarten to grade 6 level
- The school is a microcosm of society in which students practice social/life skills to move on to a work experience program, college, and get a job
- Students are integrated into a high school setting; eating in the cafeteria, going to assemblies and other school activities such as; World Fair, Battle of the Bands etc.
- Field trips are valuable experiences for students to work on social skills; appropriate behavior in public, socializing with peers, experiencing daily living activities; life skills (i.e., grocery shopping, eating in a food court/restaurant, going bowling)
Developing Social/Life Skills:
- Erindale Safe Circles Program” teaches students safe social boundaries and appropriate touch, talk and trust for each circle
- Students learn appropriate social skills from their peers in integrated classes and school activities
Inclusion Students - School Activities
- Participate in “Get your Fleece On!” (Blanket making-work experience)
- Host “Festive Frolic” (school holiday party for staff/students)
- Monthly grocery shopping for the Breakfast Club
- Monthly character trait announcements on school PA
- Manage outside school sign messages
- Perform office work (file attendances)
- Perform counseling office work (counting/folding flyers)
- Deliver newspapers to classes
- Perform library work
- Members of school Link Crew
- Members of the school Green Team
- Members of school Integrated Bocce Ball Team
- Participate in ROPSSAA athletic events – Special Needs
Program at Erindale is a unique 5 year integrated DD Resource Program with a
focus on Integration. Since its
inception, the main focus has been to provide students with developmental
disabilities a regular high school experience.
The students are supported by Teaching Assistants full -time as they
follow a time table and attend 75% of the mainstream classes on a modified
program. The students in the Program
work toward the completion of a Certificate of Accomplishment from Erindale
includes 3 out of 4 classes with mainstream students and 1 withdrawal class
that focuses on Functional Literacy and Numeracy with their peers in the
program. The students gain academic,
social and life skills by being integrated/included into all aspects of regular
high school life while being part of the Erindale Secondary School community.
In the students final year, they further develop their independent living
skills through real -life project based course work and experiences.
completion of the program, students move to the Transition to Work/Community
Program currently offered by Applewood School, Parkholme School and Thomas L
Kennedy Secondary School (TLK).
It is a wonderful
experience for all of our students and are we are very proud to be able to
expand placement options for secondary students with a developmental