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iS SU e:      
WH AT 'S    IN    A   LA BE L?

(Well, in case you're curious here's the way it goes....)

"The Story of D," & "D Revisited"

Schools' trend to avoid labelling children has both merits and drawbacks. What do I mean by that? Keep reading...... My message extends toward the reach of everyone. All I ask now is that you take it - and make it work.

It kept coming up when I asked around at school that they were simply against "labelling" children. Even if kids needing extra help were identified ("labelled"), no help was there for them. My experience

Unwritten policy has let these children struggle all they can, then wait until junior high or high school to see what happens. Scores of parents and teachers of such children echo this experience in our district alone!

Multiply that by the number of U.S. public schools to get a bigger, more complete picture of the dilemma. I've seen as an insider more than most parents ever get to see of how schools manage not to provide services.

Frequently, kids who need special services are passed over for referral because someone thinks a label will be a handicap to him or her. (How can these "good" people sleep at night?)

The real harm is in depriving kids of needed special services. I know, because I was, and now HAVE at least one of these children. Granted, there are some rare exceptions.

"Labels" can be incorrect, misinterpreted, misleading, misunderstood.

(My Place!)

There is nothing inherently wrong with labelling in its purest respect. It is a natural human tendency to group or categorize things, concepts, people, etc. This is how we as humans, learn by association.

To be judgemental of what you have "labelled" is what may be considered wrong. (It's not our place, that's for the Almighty.)

Unfortunately, this distinction is not generally made in the process. Of course opinions can't be changed with a snap of the fingers.

However, the child already knows he or she is different in some way, which right then becomes a living part of that child's identity; an internal, self-applied label. This self-concept quickly becomes a core belief.

The 1990s will be known as The Decade of the Brain because so much information has been learned medically and scientifically during this time about its workings. Information exists, and it's out there.

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