Why the current state of media reporting with excessive and uncritical use of labels for people is problematic for Inclusive Education

Working at an *Inclusive school in Cape Town, South Africa serves as a daily reminder that the labels we give each other just serve to separate and attempt to explain what is different – with the assumption that different is dangerous and the same is safe! Yet we know that not all children are the same-just put two children next to each other and watch- no experimental conditions required.

Current rhetoric in newspapers from established organisations around the world are using labels like Muslim, Christian, Jew, North African descent, terrorist and cartoonist as if these are wholly defining terms.

What we need to do is keep working out who children and people really are and help them acquire the skills needed to peacefully solve conflicts, disagreements, disappointments and differences of opinion when these arise.

Inclusion means those who are different learning together because that is the best way- not, let’s find those who are the same as us and see what we can do!

My heart heaves for the children all around the world who are being denied the opportunity to grow up with, learn from, play with, disagree with and reconcile with children, because they are different from each other. This is exactly what they need! This is what the world needs!

*We are an inclusive school because we believe all children can learn – despite and in spite of learning difficulties, specific diagnoses, languages, religious beliefs, cultural beliefs and racial classifications. We teach children- just as they are!

Rose-Anne Reynolds
Cape Town
South Africa



About Rose-Anne Reynolds

I am a Full-Time PhD Student at the University of Cape Town, with research interests in the Philosophy of Child and Childhood. I am passionate about inclusion, children, philosophy with children, embracing diversity, multilingualism, tolerance, joy and love in abundance.
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