In celebration of National Inclusive Education Month, Community Living Ontario invited elementary school aged children (ages 4-14) from across the province to participate in a contest that promotes and raises awareness about inclusive education.

The intent was to have students and classes begin to think about inclusion and start a conversation about how a diverse classroom offers better educational experiences for all students.

We received many submissions from students across the province, and Community Living Ontario appreciates and thanks the students, teachers and classes that took the time to participate in the contest.

After going through each and every video, story and poem, which were all great in their own way, Community Living Ontario is proud to announce the winners of 2017 Together, We’re Better Contest!

Class winners:

1st place

Ms. Amy Walper-Bedard’s class
Exeter Elementary School
Grade 5/6

Runner-up

La classe de Mme. Chloé Hinch et Mme. Melissa Psarros
École élémentaire catholique du Bon-Berger, Toronto
Jardin d’enfants (Kindergarten)

Runner-up
https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B8GK_svJ3D9qZ2ljQWROdmJhWUE/view
David Bitoni’s class
Holy Cross Catholic School
Grade 5/6

Individual winners:

1st place
Nolan Foster
Grade 7
Harry J. Public School

Together, We’re Better Contest

It is very difficult for kids with disabilities. Carson was a kid in my class with an impairment. It was tough for Carson in an ordinary French immersion class, but he always pulled through and did his very best. Some people may think that just because he has a disorder he isn’t smart, but he is. In fact, he contributes great and well thought out ideas to any group that he is in. The ideas that he gave were no different, maybe even better than other kids in the class, all that was different was that he needed a computer to write and a little extra help. If kids like Carson weren’t allowed to be in a normal class we wouldn’t learn from him and about him and he wouldn’t be able to learn from us and what a normal class is like. For me it seemed like a great opportunity to learn what he is like. Carson changed my life because it let me see how similar he was to the rest of the class. When kids with disabilities are in the class, everyone benefits! When we work together we’re better

2nd place
Jordan White
Grade 7
Harry J. Public School

We All Deserve the Same Respect

People are people, disability or not,
everyone should learn together
We are all living in the same world so
why should we exclude
Everyone needs to experience
different types of learning
Everyone needs to learn with
different kinds of people
Learning is a privilege but the
best part is learning with
each other because…
Together We Are Better

3rd Place
Sydney Dalton
Grade 3
Seaforth Public School

List Poem

Colin is good at defending others.
Owen is good at reading.
Leah is good at math.
Darren is good at presenter.
Avery is good at gym.
Serenity is good at getting her work done.
Carter is good at word work.
Sydney is good at art.
Trudy is good at helping.
Ron is good runner.
Richie is good at sports.
Layla is good at acting.
Sam is good at writing.
Brayden R. is friendly.
Alice is good at science.
Braedyn is good at organizing.
Tanisha is good at singing.
Sadie is good at dance.
Hannah is good at music.
Rory is good at listening.
Mrs. Rivett is great at seeing what we are all good at and uses these things to help us all work together better!

Honourable Mentions:

  • Ms. Nadia Zanatta’s class from St. Mary’s Catholic School for their short stories
  • Sara Wiebe for the story “Together, We’re better” from Tilbury Area Public School
  • Lucy, Samantha, Austin, Zaine, and Emma from Goderich Public School for their poem “Included”
  • Alexandria Hallaran for the story from Harry J. Clarke Public School
  • Cassidy Dobson for the story from Harry J. Clarke Public School
  • Raveen Sandhu for the poem “INCLUSION” from John G. Althouse Junior Public School
  • Mrs. Julia Marchio’s class for their video from St. Alexander Catholic Elementary Schhol
  • Ms Halcomb and Mrs. Barclay’s class presentation from William Dunbar Public School