News, Resources, Professional Learning
for Professionals, Policymakers, Researchers
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Dear Early Years Professional, Policymaker, or Researcher,  

In response to recent publications and media stories, this month's issue of Early Years                
s u p p o r t A L L focuses on inclusive education policy. 

Early Years s u p p o r t A L L now links you directly to featured news, resources, and professional learning opportunities. If a link does not work for you, it may have expired; please visit the home page of the item's author and search for the item by title.  

Visit the
GRC website weekly to access additional news articles, publications, and professional learning opportunities. If you have suggestions for new content, please email me (
Ellie Murphy, Communications Coordinator,
Gerrard Resource Centre-Ryerson University
                                      Early Years

s u p 
p o r t A L L

Enhancing Family Supports   /     Inclusion of Children with Disabilities

Inclusive Education Policy and Strategy

In April, the Ontario Ministry of Education introduced a special needs strategy and held an information session, Putting it All Together: A Strategy for Special Needs Services that Make Sense for Families. Also in April, People for Education released Special Education: A People for Education Report, a report that continues to generate discussion. (You can find media stories related to Special Education: A People for Education Report on the GRC web page, News for Policymakers and Researchers. Use the instructions in the blue box at the top of the GRC news page to search "People for Education.") A commonality between the Ministry's three priorities and People for Education's recommendations is standardized assessment towards early identification and support for all children.

You will find tools for assessment and critiques and discussions of assessment (e.g., Aboriginal early childhood development assessment: Issues and insights in a cultural context: A report to the British Columbia Aboriginal Child Care Society) on the GRC web page, Resources for Early Childhood and Family Supports Professionals. (Use the instructions in the blue box near the top of the GRC resources page to search "assessment".)  In addition, you can access inclusive education strategies, policies, and legislation from across Canada through this bulletin and on the GRC web page, Resources for Policymakers and Researchers(Use the instructions in the blue box near the top of the web page to search for provinces and territories by name).  
Parents, caregivers, and children play and create in the GRC drop-in program.
The Gerrard Resource Centre (GRC) is an outreach program of the School of Early Childhood Studies at Ryerson University.  The only Canadian university-based family support program  operated according to The Guiding Principles of Family Support,the GRC provides leadership in the provision of direct service to families and children and resources for parents and caregivers, professionals, researchers and policymakers, and students.

Contact Us

350 Victoria St. KHW 383A
Toronto, Ontario
M5B 2K3

(416) 979-5000 ext. 2535

(416) 979-5239

Students access the GRC Collection
of Assessment Materials, Books, and

Professional Learning  Opportunities

Infant Mental Health IMH-101: The Basics, presented by Infant Mental Health Promotion September 5, 2014

58th Annual Special Education Conference, presented by Ontario Council for Exceptional Children November 14-15, 2014


View more professional learning opportunities for professionals

View more professional learning opportunities for policymakers and researchers


Heasley, S. (2014, June 20). Schools may be underreporting restraint, seclusiondisabilityscoop. Retrieved from
"During the 2011-2012 school year, there were more than 267,000 instances of restraint and seclusion reported by the nation’s schools. The figure is believed to be low, however. 
The numbers come from an
 analysis by the nonprofit news organization ProPublica, which crunched data collected by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights" (para. 2-3).

Diament, M. (2014, June 12). Congress to 'combat' Autism no more. disabilityscoop. Retrieved from
"Lawmakers said this week that they will no longer seek to include the term 'combating' in the title of the nation's primary autism legislation. A bill to reauthorize hundreds of millions of dollars in federal spending for prevalence tracking, research, early identification efforts and other autism initiatives will move forward under a new name—the Autism Collaboration, Accountability, Research, Education, and Support Act, or Autism CARES" (para. 1-2).

Griner, D. (2014, May 8). Awkward Around People With Disabilities? These Ads Want to Help Grey London campaign looks to 'break the ice'AdweekRetrieved from
"The ads. . .show situations that almost anyone will recognize: How to shake a hand that isn't there, how to get the attention of someone you've realized is deaf and how to talk to someone in a wheelchair without looking like you're trying to comfort a child" (para 2). 

Read more news on the GRC website


Ministry of Children and Youth Services, Ministry of Community and Social Services, Ministry of Education, & Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care. (2014). Putting it all together: A strategy for special needs services that makes sense for families: Information session [PDF document]. Retrieved from
Presentation slides provide an overview of Ontario's Special Needs Strategy, including a description and implementation process for each of the strategy's three areas of focus.

Ministry of Children and Youth Services. (2014). Ontario's special needs strategy. Retrieved from
This web page summarizes the goals of Ontario's strategy for children with disabilities.

Provincial and Territorial Inclusive Education Strategies, Policies, & Legislation: 

Newfoundland Labrador Department of Education. (2014). Inclusive school culture. Retrieved from
From this web page, access information about Newfoundland and Labrador's inclusive education initiative.

Prince Edward Island Department of Education and Early Childhood Development. (2009). Minister's directive no. MD 2001-2008 special education. Retrieved from
"Pursuant to section 8 and 51 of the School Act R.S.P.E.I. 1988, Cap. S-2.1, I hereby issue the following Minister's Directive concerning Special Education" (para. 1). 

Student Services, Nova Scotia Education. (2008). Special education policy. Retrieved from
"The purpose of this document is to outline Department of Education policy with regard to the education of Nova Scotia students with special needs in the primary, secondary, and elementary school system in the Province of Nova Scotia" (p. 1).

New Brunswick Department of Education and Early Childhood Development. (n.d.) MacKay report. Retrieved from mackay/mackay-e.asp
This web page links to the MacKay report on inclusive education programming and services in New Brunswick, as well as frequently asked questions about the report. 

Ministère de l'Éducation, du Loisir et du Sport. (n.d.). Conditions for greater success: Action plan to promote success for students with handicaps, social maladjustments, or learning disabilities. Retrieved from public/59e74f4a-c76f-4582-97d9-9136f5687bf1/parents/acsssn/
This document presents the Quebec government's priorities in response to The Policy on Special Education and the Difficulties regarding Students with Handicaps, Social Maladjustments or Learning Disabilities, as of 2007-2008.
Office of the Auditor General-Manitoba. (2012). Chapter 6: Special needs education. Retrieved from
"We examined Education’s systems and practices for supporting the quality of special needs education, funding special needs education, and measuring and reporting special needs education performance information. . . . Education had developed regulations, standards, and guidelines that clearly outlined its expectations for the delivery of special needs education, but it was not monitoring for compliance. We found a low level of school division compliance with certain key standards, underlining the need for better monitoring" (p. 249).

Caswell, E., & Hadden, C. (2012). A child's right to participate and the school's duty to accept. Presented at 2012 Student Services Conference, Manitoba, Canada. Retrieved from plenary_a.pdf
This plenary presentation from the Manitoba Education 2012 Student Services Conference outlines a vision and legislation surrounding special education in Saskatchewan, as well as challenges that educators and the system face.

Alberta Education. (2014). Supporting every student: Legislation, policies, and standards. Retrieved from schoolleaders/legislation.aspx
This web page includes links to Standards for Special Education, Amended June 2004 and Standards for the Provision of Early Childhood Special Education. 

British Columbia. (2013). Special education services: A manual of policies, procedures and guidelines. Retrieved from special_ed_policy_manual.pdf
"The purpose of this manual is to provide a single point of reference regarding legislation, ministry policy and guidelines to assist school boards in developing programs and services that enable students with special needs to meet the goals of education. The manual also contains procedural information to assist in accessing programs and services provided at the provincial level" (p. 3). More information about Special Education is available from the British Columbia Ministry of Education website

Yukon Legislative Council Office. (n.d.). Education act. Retrieved from Government of Yukon website:
Division 2 of Yukon's Education Act addresses special education.

Northwest Territories Department of Education, Culture, and Employment. (2006). Ministerial directive on inclusive schooling. Retrieved from
"The Ministerial Directive on Inclusive Schooling (2006) builds on earlier documents by defining and describing the standards, required processes and accountability for the provision of an education program and required supports for each student in the school system" (p. 2). The Directive also outlines the roles of various stakeholders, including the government and parents.

Government of Nunavut. (2011). Education act: Inclusive education regulations. Retrieved from ca/pdf/Inclusive%20Ed%20Regulations%20_Registeredreduced.pdf
In 2011, Nunavut's Commissioner in Education Council drafted 37 regulations for inclusive education.

Access more resources for professionals through the GRC website

Access more resources for policymakers and researchers through the GRC website


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