Acceptance: The True Measure of Inclusion

The gift of acceptance; Removing the Stumbling Block


The action or process of being received as adequate or suitable, typically to be admitted into a group.

It's what we all want, isn't it? 

To be accepted. No catches, no caveats, no conditions - just accepted.  

I've written about it before: Teach your children to be accepting of disabilities and the difference between tolerance and acceptance.

If you talk with parents of children with disabilities or read some of the many parent blogs out there, you will discover a common thread; parents want their children with disabilities to be accepted for who they are. (Really, it's what ALL parents want for their children...)

Our responsibility as advocates of inclusion is to create spaces where people will be able to say, “Thank you for accepting me for who I am while giving me the courage to grow, explore and reach past my own perceived limitations.”

That’s it. That’s the true measure of inclusion.

At the end of the day it's really not about whether we have the right teaching strategies or the right classroom structure or the right supports. Those things matter, to be sure. I am not at all making light of the importance of these constructs.  

But what we most need to give our students, our congregants, our friends and our family members with disabilities is the gift of acceptance. We must accept each of them for who they are while giving them the courage to grow, explore and reach beyond their own perceived limitations. 


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