It is at the foundation levels that children with Dyspraxia have most learning difficulties because their comprehension is average but there level of expression of this comprehension is limited. Therefore it is at this stage that these children have to be trained to express and advance their expression. In short it would be necessary for there to be accommodations to be made in the education system to ensure that the teaching of these children is sufficient. The arguments to creating teaching methods into the mainstream education system at the foundation level are very similar to the arguments of employing disabled persons in the workplace. The first argument will follow the arguments for integration into the workforce and then will consider specific teaching methods. The first main argument is whether there should be differential treatment for the children with Dyspraxia.
To understand the extent that the current disability rights are effective one must understand there is a difference between a mere legal right and an inherent (also known as substantive) right. Hohfeld has been the most significant jurisprudential thinker to discuss the difference between the varying types of rights. The focus of Hohfeld’s analysis of rights is from an analytical perspective; the main aim of Hohfeld’s work was to clarify exactly what rights are. Hohfeld’s analysis of rights is split into four different categories which are; claim-right; privilege; power and immunity.
These rights have been put together into a grid of entitlements which enables one to understand the nature and content of rights; which the individual has in varying degrees. It is this clear and precise method that makes Hohfeld’s analysis fundamental to rights interpretation within legal arenas. This exploration is going to argue that this exposition of rights is essential to jurisprudence and understanding the nature of rights. Under English law Hohfeld’s analysis clearly expresses how varying degrees of rights are contained under the Human Rights Act 1998 and do not conflict with parliamentary sovereignty. As Helen Fenwick discusses:
“Under Hohfeld’s view… it becomes clear that, traditionally, most freedoms in the UK were merely liberties; one did no wrong to exercise them, but there was no positive duty on any organ of the state to facilitate them… When the Human Rights Act 1998 came fully into force… many Hohfeldian liberties became rights in Hofeldian terms since… public authorities have been laid under a positive duty to respect them” .
Hohfeld’s analysis is that the confusion over the nature of rights has been effectively eliminated. In contrast to the controversies in theorists such as Dworkin , Kymlicka , Kant and MacKinnon , it does not get trapped into confusing the nature of rights with the justification of rights. If one applies this to problems concerning gender; discrimination; animal; and environmental rights one could actually apply a type of right in order to rectify the legal and moral inequities. Legal and political philosophers have gotten too tied up in justifying rights, that they have confused the meaning of right. Hohfeld has provided an interesting tool in order to level the playing field, because the question concerning the equality of rights is no longer an issue.
Instead Hohfeld’s analysis allows for different right-elements to be applied in different situations. Therefore Hohfeld’s analysis can be applied to both legal analysis and moral quandaries, which means that one in addition to clarifying rights can use this analysis as a tool to justifying rights.
Hohfeld was very humble in his aims for his analysis of rights, because it has provided more than a tool to clarify rights. For example if one applied this problem to media law where there are conflicts in the right to privacy and the freedom of press, these rights possibly fall into the categories of immunity; claim-right; and privilege. The problem is that they are competing rights and if one applies the level of right, also to the specific facts then the confusion that has happened between courts would be a lot less likely. In short Hohfeld’s analysis has taken out all the moral quandaries in the nature of rights; and has provided an analytical method to apply to both moral quandaries and the justification of rights. This will become more apparent in the following chapters.
In relation to absolute human rights or substantive rights then these are immunities which the government cannot interfere with; however a mere legal right is a privilege whereby the government has provided disability rights, but there is no need to provide these rights and may be taken away if in the government’s interest. Therefore this illustrates the importance of making disability rights substantive rights but not only in the workplace but also in schools. This means if integration is the best form because it makes such a disability socially acceptable then this should be the method taken. In order to do this there must be specialized teaching methods which the teachers use and have a duty to provide in much the same way that employers have to provide special adaptations for disabled adults.
The Learning Disabilities Association of America argues that the student from an early age should be subject to a curriculum that mirrors that of the child without disability, only with “some accommodations and modifications may be necessary”. They argue that these modifications should take the form of an Individual Education Programme whereby for students with reading difficulties or expression of comprehension through reading should have a mixture of one-on-one reading with a teacher and should also be provided with texts that are on tape so that they can follow along with the reading material.
If the problem is of the memory or the inability to take down information, i.e. motor problems the teacher should provide a taped lesson for the child, teacher and parents to review at a speed whereby the child can than express their comprehension. If the motor skill impede too much then a special software programme through voice should be used. Also children with Dyspraxia at the foundation level may find expression easier by using other forms of expression, i.e. songs, rhymes, dances, tapes etc. Also along the same line to help expression of comprehension and teach how to express properly then using the other senses such as touch should be considered. These are teaching techniques that all children can use therefore this will not impede the other learners at the foundation level; as well as letting the teacher be more innovative and creative as well as building the blocks for the Individual Education Programme of the Dyspraxic child.
The Australian Dyspraxic Support Group also advances techniques to help the child express their comprehension of the educative material. This group does not seem to indicate that there should be either specialized teaching or integration into the mainstream education system at the foundational levels. The aim seems to be to help the child and ensure that their intelligence is not impeded by stereotypes with putting the right teaching techniques with child. Therefore if it is motor based Dyspraxia it is to specialize teaching in developing the organization and capability of the planned expression of comprehension in the ways that the child can.
If it is verbal Dyspraxia then development of the speech processes and other forms of communication should be developed and finally if it is oral Dyspraxia then written forms of communication should be used and also attempts to develop speech skills should be introduced. Therefore the use of sensory and taped materials would will really benefit the development of the child at the foundation level. Also to have integration will expose the child to mimic and use ways of communication that isolation would be unable to do so. Therefore one can infer that mainstream integration at the foundation levels would be the best approach.
Belinda Hill advances in her article and research for the Dyspraxia Association of Ireland that technological aides can be used to integrate children with verbal and oral Dyspraxia. These aides include speaking computers, machines that enhance speech, machines that have a set response when a specific button is pushed, communication through symbols. These aides will help a child integrate and not feel lost in a world of communication. This would provide confidence and social development of a child which isolated education could not provide.