Children become socially handicapped when they consistently ignore the impact of their behaviour on other people and when their development is insensitive to social influences and unaffected by their social experiences. Social handicaps are caused by the circumstances and conditions in which a child grows up; they are not due to psychiatric disorders which damage the emotional development of neurotic or psychotic children, and they are not due to the child’s inability to learn. The child is handicapped when he cannot deal with conditions or manage situations which call for a flexible approach and a readiness to adapt his responses to those of other children. When there are no other children about, his activities can develop successfully; at such times there is no handicap because there is no need for social integration. The impact of a social handicap is twofold: it prevents the social development of the handicapped child, and his behaviour interferes with the development of other children; when there is a socially handicapped child in a class at school, his behaviour can make it impossible for the others to learn.