This project describes the process of increasing the inclusion services for specific learning disabilities (SLD) students at Brimhall Junior High School in Mesa Public Schools. The reauthorization of the Individuals With Disabilities Act (IDEA) in 1997 mandated the accessibility of the general education curriculum for these students. This move toward a more inclusive environment required changing current delivery services by actively involving general education teachers and special education teachers in a partnership. Increasing the inclusion programs and numbers of students involved required expansion of knowledge and skills of special education and inclusion practices by the faculty.
Essentially, this was a qualitative research project primarily concerned with verbal and written descriptions and interpretations based on multiple perspectives, continuously collected within a natural setting to study the uniqueness of the context (Borg, Gall, & Gall, 1993). Collection of data included surveys, interviews, discussions, observations, records, and artifacts from all stakeholders. Formative and summative evaluations of the project, including questionnaires, surveys, interviews, observations, journal notes, discussions, records, and artifacts, were integral components to assist in making recommendations and implications at the conclusion of the project.
Findings of this study support that implementation of inclusive programs can create a more inclusive environment from an existing inclusive foundation. Piloting new inclusionary programs increased SLD student numbers in general education classrooms. SLD students made academic progress in these inclusionary programs. General education teachers exhibited positive attitudes and were more willing to participate in the inclusion process when provided with knowledge, skills, and resources. Critical to the project's success were administration and special education support and the project writer's role and active leadership.
|School:||Nova Southeastern University|
|School Location:||United States -- Florida|
|Source:||DAI-A 69/07, Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Special education, Teacher education|
|Keywords:||Collaboration, Education, Inclusion, Individualized education plan, Learning disabilities, Mainstreaming, Special education, Special needs instruction|
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