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Title:A case study on the introduction of new inclusion policy and its effects on four school cultures
Author(s):Arthur-Boswell, Cleo
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Rodgers, Frederick A.
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Sociology of
Education, Special
Education, Curriculum and Instruction
Abstract:This study was designed to determine the empirical validity of the assumption that educators would positively embrace the state policy on inclusion with a willingness to have disabled students in their regular classrooms. The study described staff attitudes towards issues and the implementation of a school improvement effort of inclusion, within the context of four school cultures.
The study utilized the naturalistic approach with the intent of understanding why teachers had the attitudes they did toward inclusion of students. The procedures that were used involved gathering and analyzing data in an attempt to see the issues through the eyes of its participants. Data collection was achieved by several methods. During the first phase of the study, historical and demographic information was obtained. An attitude survey was given to the participating schools, and select teachers were identified for semi-structured and structured interviews. Other data sources include demographic information, achievement data, and enrollment data for regular and special education students over the past five years.
One of the major significant findings of this study is that teachers believe that children have the right to receive an education in as natural environment as possible. They hold, however, that inclusion should not place the education of regular students in jeopardy. Most importantly, this study revealed that teachers think that in order for inclusion to succeed, those who work with inclusion children must have some desire to do so.
The strongest elements of this study point to the willingness of teachers to try, the recognition that it can be done with the right support systems, the fact that it must meet the needs of all students, that the attitudes within the culture have an impact on the success of the program and, finally, that the staff recognizes the need for appropriate preparation and staff development.
The findings from this study can serve as a heuristic device for principals, teachers, and other staff with regard to the implementation of a program of inclusion. The study's primary significance is that it provides a forum for examining the attitudes of staff with regard to the potential success of such an initiative.
Issue Date:1994
Rights Information:Copyright 1994 Arthur-Boswell, Cleo
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog:AAI9512291
OCLC Identifier:(UMI)AAI9512291

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