Emily Included by Kathleen McDonnellEmily Included by Kathleen McDonnell

Emily Included

byKathleen McDonnell

Mass Market Paperback | October 15, 2011

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Emily Eaton was born with severe cerebral palsy. Denied access to classes at her local school, she and her parents challenged the local board of education for her right to be educated with non-disabled children in a regular classroom. Her case took years and went all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada in the late nineties and is considered an important step in the fight for inclusive education for both physically and mentally challenged people. Emily went on to graduate from high school, proving the skeptics wrong. Emily's fight to be treated like a "normal", everyday kid in a regular classroom, at a time when children with CP were segregated, was groundbreaking. Her story makes her an amazing role model for children everywhere - whether they are living with a disability or not. Based on a true story
Kathleen McDonnell is an award-winning author and playwright of adult and children’s literature, including The Notherland Journeys series – The Nordlings, The Shining World, and The Songweavers – and Honey, We Lost the Kids. Born in Chicago, Kathleen lives in Toronto with her family.
Title:Emily IncludedFormat:Mass Market PaperbackDimensions:126 pages, 7.55 × 5.23 × 0.32 inPublished:October 15, 2011Publisher:Second Story PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1926920333

ISBN - 13:9781926920337


Rated 5 out of 5 by from triumphant and inspirational This was one of the most inspirational middle-grade stories of a young Canadian girl that I've read. Emily Eaton was born with cerebral palsy. She couldn't communicate except with a few signs and she couldn't control her movements. Although in a wheelchair, her family involved her in everything they did, and she felt loved and supported and part of her community. Emily went to a regular school until the school's committee for students with special needs decided that it would be best for Emily to be in a special school for disabled students. Emily and her parents decided to challenge the decision by taking their case to the Advocacy Resource Centre for the Handicapped (ARCH). In time it went all the way to the Supreme Court and became history-making because the decision affected all who are disabled. Emily's parents pursued it because they said “it was about the principles of equality and justice for all people with disabilities”. Emily Included is told from the point of view of Emily in the third person. We get to see her world as a child with a bright mind but a body that she could not control. Several times I teared up as I was reading her story. The way her brothers included her in their games or the way the children in school knew what she was trying to say to them because they were her friend and got to know her way of communicating is a testament that, when children are exposed to other children with disabilities, they are comfortable with children who are different. They will not be afraid of someone in a wheelchair who speaks and acts strangely. I saw this firsthand when I worked in a school that included children with disabilities. This book stressed the importance of parents being their child's advocate. I have so much respect for the Eaton family who fought for the rights of their beloved Emily. I think every Canadian school should have this book in their library and it would be a good idea to include it as a part of social studies. Highly recommended.
Date published: 2012-12-23

Editorial Reviews

Kathleen McDonnell has written an inspirational narrative about Emily's remarkable journey to attend school with non-disabled children. What I found fascinating was that Emily's teachers and students found how much they benefited from her participation in school.