Teachers’ Changing Attitudes and Preferences around Inclusive Education
Saloviita, T. (2020). Teachers’ Changing Attitudes and Preferences around Inclusive Education. International Journal of Disability, Development and Education, 69(6), 1841-1858. https://doi.org/10.1080/1034912X.2020.1828569
© 2020 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
Inclusive education as an alternative to traditional separate special education has gained recognition since the approval of the Salamanca Statement in 1994. The success of inclusion is considered to be highly dependent on the teachers’ positions on inclusion. In this study Finnish comprehensive school teachers’ opinions were investigated in order to evaluate the prospects of inclusion in Finland, and also to study the variables associated with these attitudes. A total of 2,276 teachers and principals participated in the email survey. The final sample contained 1,041classroom teachers, 755 subject teachers and 445 special education teachers. The results confirmed the existence of a large variety in attitudes both in the whole sample as well as between the teacher categories. Except for special education teachers, the participants reported changing their position more often towards negative than positive direction. The availability of material resources such as smaller class size, had no association with teachers’ attitudes. Instead, the immaterial resources such as help from other teachers had a positive association with more positive attitudes. Even if the teachers’ opinions were more critical than in many other countries, the survey also indicated the existence of the potential for positive development towards more inclusive education. ...
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