Classroom teachers have always had exceptional students in regular classrooms; many of these children could not be placed due to overcrowding of special education classes. Some were undiagnosed and unrecognized in terms of specific disability. The parents of others would not allow separation from regular learning settings. Often these handicapped learners in normative educational settings were relegated to marginal roles and ignored. Special learners were sometimes the focus of annoyance of teachers and classmates, who did not understand their disability and could not effectively aid special learning. Much of the time, handicapped children were successfully taught by the ingenious teacher, who utilized make-do arrangements, but was effective in reaching students with special needs. Further, there is research to indicate that some exceptional learners whose disability is not extreme do learn very well in regular classrooms and do not profit educationally or socially by being separated from their more normative peers (Dunn, 1968, Goldstein, Moss and Johnson, 1965).
Hedley, C. N. (1981). Mainstreaming and the Classroom Teacher: A Practical Approach. Reading Horizons, 21 (3). Retrieved from http://scholarworks.wmich.edu/reading_horizons/vol21/iss3/7