Shared pedagogical understandings: schoolwide inclusion practices supporting learner needs

Abawi, Lindy and Oliver, Mark (2013) Shared pedagogical understandings: schoolwide inclusion practices supporting learner needs. Improving Schools, 16 (2). pp. 159-174. ISSN 1365-4802


Educational perspectives that recommend inclusion of children with special needs into mainstream classrooms remain a controversial topic. The Melbourne Declaration declares that all young Australians should be supported to become successful learners; confident and creative individuals; and active and informed citizens. So the question remains how is this to be achieved in ways that support all learners to reach their full potential regardless of their individual talents or learning challenges. Funding to support students with special needs is not staying in touch with the increasing numbers of students with special needs, many of whom are entering into mainstream schools and classrooms, thus schools must find effective ways of meeting a wide diversity of need. Creative and blended modes of support and inclusion must be trialled, critiqued and adjusted to meet the needs of each specific context. Practices that may be successful in one context with one cohort of students will not necessarily work within a different context and/or with a different group of students. Nonetheless, research shows that underpinning principles of practice and support structures that provide for all students within a school can and are being established successfully. Much can be learnt from successful practices such as those explored within this school case study. Underpinning the success of this school's approach to inclusion is the school's culture of support and relationships building. This strongly
supportive culture emerged as a result of the envisioning work the school community undertook as part of the school’s involvement in the successful school revitalization project known as IDEAS (Innovative Designs for Enhancing Achievements in Schools). Individualized support programs have created a student-centred culture of inclusion according to need, which provides an approach to guide practices in other contexts.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: © The Author(s) 2013. Permanent restricted access to Published Version due to publisher copyright policy.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Teacher Education and Early Childhood
Date Deposited: 02 Jul 2013 05:56
Last Modified: 05 Feb 2018 06:22
Uncontrolled Keywords: differentiation; diversity; inclusion; school culture; special needs
Fields of Research : 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170103 Educational Psychology
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130309 Learning Sciences
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130312 Special Education and Disability
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9399 Other Education and Training > 939903 Equity and Access to Education
Identification Number or DOI: 10.1177/1365480213493711

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