In 2004 First Step Georgia established an integrated class in Tbilisi public school #10. In the beginning, there were six children with moderate disabilities. In 2008 the integrated class moved and continued working in Tbilisi public school #100.
The integrated class is an important aspect of inclusive education, as it helps children with special needs access formal and non-formal education. The goal is to eventually move those students that are ready and able from the integrated class into standard pubic school classes.
The integrated class teachers follow a special program, based on the national curriculum. The abilities of each child are considered within this context, and we have found that this help them adapt more quickly to the school environment and study process.
Integrated class specialists collaborate with the Teachers Continuing Education and Training Centre of Georgia Ministry of Education and Science.
For social integration purposes, the integrated class and daily life activities are planned and implemented with students of other classes as much as possible. The parents are actively involved and they have the chance to learn new skills for working effectively with children with disabilities.
Integrated situations also help parents to see their children in a whole new context - it often lets them see their children's future more positively.
Today 14 students with special educational needs study in integrated classes in Tbilisi.