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Who is AFIE?

Advocates for Inclusive Education (AFIE) is a group of concerned stakeholders coming together to increase opportunities in North Carolina for successful inclusion of children with disabilities in general education classrooms. We hold educational workshops for parents and advocate for improvements in our education system that will increase the prevalence of inclusive education practices in North Carolina. Save & Exit

What is inclusive education?

The National Center on Educational Restructuring and Inclusion (NCERI) defines inclusion as: Providing to all students, including those with significant disabilities, equitable opportunities to receive effective educational services, with the needed supplementary aids and support services, in age appropriate classrooms in their neighborhood schools, in order to prepare students for productive lives as full members of society.

How to join the effort?

For more information reach out to Our monthly support/planning meetings in Raleigh are open to all. Check the events tab for any upcoming meetings. If you can not join us in person, connect with us on facebook or join our email list for updates.

AFIE’s Mission:

The mission of Advocates for Inclusive Education (AFIE) is to support students with disabilities and their families in the pursuit of inclusion within the general education setting. We seek to accomplish this through peer support, advocacy, use of research based practices, and implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).

AFIE began as a group of 7 mothers of children with Down Syndrome who were concerned about the lack of inclusive educational opportunities in North Carolina. Although each of us had our own unique circumstances, through conversations, we noticed that there were stark parallels about the roadblocks we encountered when attempting to include our children. Therefore, we began to organize our efforts towards raising awareness and bringing about change. We did not see the work of AFIE as primarily a way to solve our personal issues surrounding inclusion. Instead, we began by looking at long term goals and global issues that needed to be addressed so that future parents of children with disabilities did not need to face the same struggles as we had.

As AFIE members, we have spent time on parent support and education as well as the legal aspects behind LRE and ADA. The group has progressed from Sunday meetings to gather research on the benefits of inclusion to meetings with the assistant superintendent of special education in a local school district and collaboration with other disability and inclusion organizations.

We recognize that the struggle to find inclusive opportunities for our children is not an issue confined to the Down Syndrome Community. Therefore, we have reached out to parents of children with various challenges and hosted support sessions related to inclusion. We also recognize and respect that each parent’s vision for inclusion of their children is different. No matter what type of inclusion you envision for your child, we welcome you to join our group as we work to open up opportunities for inclusive education in North Carolina.