Inclusion as a Natural Extension of the Person-Centered Approach: Welcoming All Learners


Walker, Sarah


During my attendance at ADPCA, I could not help but reflect on the benefits that the person-centered approach offers special education. In my professional experience as a teacher and therapeutic staff support, I have often found myself wondering the best way to reach children, and how to help them truly learn. Turning to a collection of essays, papers, and talks given by Carl Rogers gave me a great deal of philosophical direction, and creative inspiration. Looking at research on inclusion, especially by those who advocate and assess the effectiveness of a learner-centered approach to education, the efficacy of the approach became clear to me. Coming away from the conference I felt excited to incorporate the person-centered approach into my future work as a therapist. I now feel prepared to incorporate this approach in my current education profession, and into my own personal life. This paper presents reactions to the 24th Annual Association for the Development of the Person Centered Approach (ADPCA) Conference held at Kutztown University in June, 2009. This paper shares my experiences and reflections on how education and inclusion have been influenced by the Person-Centered Approach, as well as how the Person-Centered Approach can continue to enrich and infill special education practices with life and energy. Case Illustrations.