Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of SJR0021
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Full Text of SJR0021  101st General Assembly




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2    WHEREAS, Disability is a natural part of the human
3experience and in no way diminishes the right of individuals to
4participate in or contribute to society; improving educational
5results for children with disabilities is an essential element
6of ensuring equality of opportunity, full participation,
7independent living, and economic self-sufficiency for
8individuals with disabilities; and
9    WHEREAS, Research shows that the best outcomes for all
10young children are realized when high-quality specialized
11services such as special education, early intervention, and
12related services are delivered in the same setting the child
13would attend if they did not have a disability; and
14    WHEREAS, Inclusive education brings all children together
15in one classroom, setting, and community, regardless of their
16ability or disability in any domain of development, and seeks
17to maximize the potential of all preschool-aged children; and
18    WHEREAS, Preschool may be the child and family's first
19experience with school; and
20    WHEREAS, The commonality between all preschool-aged
21children is the need to be amongst their peers; and



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1    WHEREAS, Preschool-aged children with disabilities can be
2included socially with their peers; this allows them to create
3long-lasting friendships that would not be otherwise possible,
4and these friendships can give them the skills to navigate
5social relationships later in life; and
6    WHEREAS, In a well-designed, high-quality inclusive early
7childhood environment, the teacher uses inclusion strategies
8to help children succeed developmentally and socially;
9therefore, children encounter higher expectations; and
10    WHEREAS, Preschool-aged children with disabilities who are
11educated in an inclusive classroom have been found to score
12higher on literacy measures than children educated in
13segregated settings; and
14    WHEREAS, Research has shown that most children without
15disabilities in inclusive classrooms have scored higher on
16state standardized tests over a period of 4 years; and
17    WHEREAS, Research also indicates that inclusive education
18promotes and enhances the social growth of all children within
19inclusive classrooms and does not negatively affect the
20academic growth of typically developing children; and



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1    WHEREAS, In an inclusion setting, children with and without
2disabilities learn how to work with each other, regardless of
3individual skills and abilities, which helps improve academic
4performance and the ability to succeed later in life; and
5    WHEREAS, All families want their children to be accepted by
6their peers and have friends, and inclusive settings can make
7this vision a reality for children with disabilities; and
8    WHEREAS, Families can be positively affected by having
9their children educated in inclusive early childhood
10classrooms through potential friendship and relationship
11opportunities; and
12    WHEREAS, When preschool-aged children attend inclusive
13early childhood classes that reflect the similarities and
14differences of people in the real world, they learn to
15appreciate diversity; and
16    WHEREAS, Respect and understanding grow when children of
17differing abilities and cultures communicate and learn
18together, which may be the first step in creating a more
19diverse workforce and world; therefore, be it



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1CONCURRING HEREIN, that we encourage the Illinois State Board
2of Education, special education cooperatives, and each school
3district in this State to consider the potential benefits of
4inclusive education for children with and without disabilities
5in Illinois; and be it further
6    RESOLVED, That suitable copies of this resolution be
7delivered to the Illinois State Board of Education and the
8Regional Offices of Education.