First Bullied, Now Accepted: The Power of Inclusive Education
At first glance, Satria is a regular eight-year-old boy. His favorite television show is “Thomas and Friends.”
But Satria has been bullied since first grade because his classmates considered his behavior unnatural. He was diagnosed with hyperactivity, learning difficulties and a language disorder. His teacher, Mrs. Yuliati, wanted to help him study as his classmates did, but he struggled to participate.
An inclusive education management training provided by the Fossil Foundation and HKI allowed Mrs. Yuliati to learn how to adapt her curriculum to accommodate Satria. He is now in the third grade and learning alongside his peers.
Ridwan Maulana, Satria’s father said, "I believe that my son can learn in a regular school through inclusive education — he doesn’t have to be at the special school." Inclusive education has given Satria a chance to study in a mainstream school with his peers.
Support from his teacher helps Satria focus his learning in class and control his emotions better. His classmates have come to understand and accept him, so the stigma of his disability has faded. He can now read and write.
School principal Cucum Kulsum at first denied Satria's presence in the school, but he is now convinced of the program’s value. "I’ll assure you of Satria’s accomplishments [in] his studies at my school!," he said. — Wendy Elkenans