10 SES 08 C, Quality, Assessment and Teacher Training
In the aftermath of the ratification of the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN-CRPD), major efforts have been made in many countries of the world, including Germany, to implement legislation and policies that guarantee students a full entitlement to inclusive education on all levels. The UN-CRSP has supported transformational processes focussing on inclusive systems, cultures as well as practices and has initiated reforms of e.g. mainstream dual school systems, of regular and special education, or initial teacher training. In Germany, the realisation of policies on inclusion has however not been without difficulties. The normative stance of the CRPD was faced with scepticism by teachers and their advocacy groups. Some forms of education, such as vocational schools, have hitherto hardly been addressed by inclusive measures.
There is consensus that teacher training is crucial for a successful inclusion policy in education. Evidence shows that beliefs and attitudes of teachers and other educational staff are critical in ensuring successful inclusive practices and commitment to the implementation of inclusion policies. While curriculums of initial teacher training have been adjusted to the call for inclusion in Germany, preparation of in-service teachers to satisfy the needs for inclusive education has been rather slow and lags behind. It is well documented that practicing teachers are not, or report not to be well prepared for teaching in inclusive classrooms as well as coping with differences among students. The majority of in-service teachers recognise the need for professional learning opportunities about inclusive education because they were poorly prepared during their initial training.
In addition to upskilling teachers, other educational staff members who are involved in inclusive classrooms practices also need to be addressed by appropriate training opportunities. The collaboration with other educational professionals to support learners with and without special educational needs is a key strategy and common practice in many school systems. The relevance of the multi-professional approach, however, contrast with findings that highlight that the demand for training to support the neediest students in classroom is even higher for paraprofessional support staff such as integration aides. Apart from a relative lack of provision of professional learning opportunities for this group, many integration aides are reserved in undertaking training beyond their working hours for reasons of precarious labour conditions and lack of incentives.
Another issue of concern for the professionalization process is the uncertainty about best-practice professional learning. This covers, inter alia, the type of content that should be included in training strategies for inclusive education as well as the identification of those competencies of professional staff members that are evidenced to work in inclusive classrooms. The range of competencies should include knowledge, understanding, and skills as well as dispositions, i.e. beliefs, attitudes, values, and commitment about and toward inclusive education.
The German project “Schule tatsächlich inklusiv – Evidenzbasierte modulare Weiterbildung für praktizierende Lehr- und andere pädagogische Fachkräfte (StiEL)” connects to the debates about inclusion in education via unresolved issues related to (a) the readiness of in-service teachers and other educational staff and (b) the content and effectiveness of professional development.
The research project ‘StiEL’ responds to the call for better training for inclusive education. The overall goal is to contribute to the professional development of teachers and other educational staff working at German secondary general and vocational schools with the development of an evidence-based training programme about students with diverse abilities. StiEL is a collaborative research effort of three partnering institutions funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research from 2018-2021. To support the on-going transition towards inclusive school practices and to develop evidence-based programme materials for an in-service training to promote inclusive school practices, a multi-stage approach is envisaged. The first phase reviews national and international research literature on the topic, and identifies existing training programmes on inclusion. This overview is supplemented by expert interviews with school staff members (school principals, teachers, educational assistants) and providers of in-service training. During the second phase of the project, training modules will be developed. The contents as well as the didactic and methodological approaches of these modules will be derived from the findings of the first phase. For reasons of feasibility and planning, six preliminary themes were selected and included in the project plan based on expertise and a screening of the literature to guide the development of training modules. These are: ‘inclusive didactics and diagnostics’, ‘multi-professional cooperation’, ‘school and community development’, ‘definitions of inclusion and heterogeneity’, ‘human rights education and social learning’, and ‘differentiation of achievement and learning objectives’. The third phase of the project aims at testing and evaluating the training modules. Knowledge and skills acquired by the teachers and other education professionals during the training programme as well as changes of dispositions reflected by changes in the teaching and the management style of inclusive classrooms after the training will be evaluated by means of a longitudinal design and an ethnographic approach (pre- and post-comparison between intervention and control groups). The combination of two evaluation approaches lives up to the complexity of the topic and aims to assess various dimensions of the effectiveness and development of the training. The final project phase creates a best practice manual, initializes and establishes a network and makes the modules available via open access databases and reference lists of good practice models. The presentation of the paper will focus mainly on preliminary results of the screening of already existing training material and the requirements of further training courses articulated in the expert interviews.
Overall, StiEL is a contribution to bridge the policy-to-practice gap in inclusive education. In a broader perspective, we expect to learn more about the current competencies of those people who are in charge of the everyday implementation of inclusion in the German educational system. This includes not only an assessment of knowledge and skills but also in-depth insights into the views and other dispositional factors of teachers and other educational staff. We also expect from our work that we will be able to identify good practices of training on inclusion that are most promising to contribute to the professional development of teachers and other educational staff members in the German school system. In a more instrumental perspective and in terms of deliverables, we expect that we will be able to develop and evaluate a comprehensive and evidenced training programme that is capable to better prepare in-service teachers and other educational staff for inclusive education.
Amrhein, B. & Badstieber, B. (2012). Lehrerfortbildungen zu Inklusion – Eine Trendanalyse. Eine Expertise gefördert durch die Bertelsmann Stiftung. Avramidis, E. & Norwich, B. (2002). Teachers’ attitudes towards integration/inclusion: a review of the literature. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 17 (2), 129-147. Baumert, J. & Kunter, M. (2006). Stichwort: Professionelle Kompetenz von Lehrkräften. Zeitschrift für Erziehungswissenschaft, 9 (4), 469-520. Biermann, J. & Powell, J. J. W. (2014). Institutionelle Dimensionen inklusiver Schulbildung – Herausforderungen der UN-Behindertenrechtskonvention für Deutschland, Island und Schweden im Vergleich. Zeitschrift für Erziehungswissenschaft, 17 (4), 679-700. Booth, T. & Ainscow, M. (2000; 2011). Index for Inclusion. Developing learning and participation in schools. Bristol: CSIE. Forsa-Institut 2015. Inklusion an Schulen aus Sicht der Lehrerinnen und Lehrer – Meinungen, Einstellungen und Erfahrungen. Ergebnisse einer repräsentativen Lehrerbefragung an allgemeinbildenden Schulen im Auftrag des Verbandes Bildung und Erziehung (VBE). Fröhlich-Gildhoff, K. (2015). Kompetenzorientierte Aus- und Weiterbildung – Verankerung von Inklusion als Inhalt und Prinzip. In E. Reichert-Garschhammer et al. (Hrsg.), Inklusion und Partizipation – Vielfalt als Chance und Anspruch (S. 253-262). Göttingen: Vandenhoeck + Ruprecht. Heinrich, M. & Lübeck, A. (2013). Hilflos häkelnde Helfer? Zur pädagogischen Rationalität von Integrationshelfer/inn/en im inklusiven Unterricht. Bildungsforschung, 10 (1), 91-110. Hinz, A. (2009). Inklusive Pädagogik in der Schule – veränderter Orientierungsrahmen für die schulische Sonderpädagogik!? Oder doch deren Ende? Zeitschrift für Heilpädagogik, 60 (5), 171-179. Jordan, A. et al. (2009). Preparing teachers for inclusive classrooms. Teacher education for inclusive education. Teaching and Teacher Education, 25 (4), 535-542. Knigge, M. et al. (2016). Do teacher stereotypes about school tracks function as expectations at the collective level and do they relate to the perception of obstacles in the classroom and to teachers’ self-efficacy beliefs? Journal of Educational Research Online, 8 (2), 158-191. Kullmann, H. et al. (2014). Inklusiver Unterricht – (Auch) eine Frage der Einstellung! Eine Interviewstudie über Einstellungen und Bereitschaften von Lehrkräften und Schulleitungen zur Inklusion. Schulpädagogik heute, 5 (10), 1-14. Lipowsky, F. (2010). Lernen im Beruf: Empirische Befunde zur Wirksamkeit von Lehrerfortbildung. In F. H. Müller, A. Eichenberger, M. Lüders & J. Mayer (Hrsg.), Lehrerinnen und Lehrer lernen. Konzepte und Befunde zur Lehrerfortbildung (S. 65–70). Münster: Waxmann. Savolainen, H. et al. (2012). Understanding teachers' attitudes and self-efficacy in inclusive education: implications for pre-service and in-service teacher education. European Journal of Special Needs Education, 27 (1), 51-68. Werning, R. (2014). Stichwort: Schulische Inklusion. Zeitschrift für Erziehungswissenschaft, 17 (4), 601-623.
00. Central Events (Keynotes, EERA-Panel, EERJ Round Table, Invited Sessions)
Network 1. Continuing Professional Development: Learning for Individuals, Leaders, and Organisations
Network 2. Vocational Education and Training (VETNET)
Network 3. Curriculum Innovation
Network 4. Inclusive Education
Network 5. Children and Youth at Risk and Urban Education
Network 6. Open Learning: Media, Environments and Cultures
Network 7. Social Justice and Intercultural Education
Network 8. Research on Health Education
Network 9. Assessment, Evaluation, Testing and Measurement
Network 10. Teacher Education Research
Network 11. Educational Effectiveness and Quality Assurance
Network 12. LISnet - Library and Information Science Network
Network 13. Philosophy of Education
Network 14. Communities, Families and Schooling in Educational Research
Network 15. Research Partnerships in Education
Network 16. ICT in Education and Training
Network 17. Histories of Education
Network 18. Research in Sport Pedagogy
Network 19. Ethnography
Network 20. Research in Innovative Intercultural Learning Environments
Network 22. Research in Higher Education
Network 23. Policy Studies and Politics of Education
Network 24. Mathematics Education Research
Network 25. Research on Children's Rights in Education
Network 26. Educational Leadership
Network 27. Didactics – Learning and Teaching
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