Collaborative classroom practice for inclusion: perspectives of classroom teachers and learning support/resource teachers

Monica Mulholland, Una O'Connor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

17 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Collaborative practice is integral to effective inclusion. Within schools, teacher collaboration can foster communities of practice through a series of professional relationships that enhance the educational experience and learning outcomes of pupils with special educational needs (SEN). In Ireland, Learning Support Teachers (LSTs) and Resource Teachers (RTs) provide additional support to the increasing numbers of children with SEN in mainstream classrooms. Working alongside Classroom Teachers (CTs), this tripartite of teaching expertise represents an opportunity for whole-school and classroom-based approaches to successful collaborative, inclusive practice.This article describes the perceptions and experiences of collaborative practice between primary CTs, RTs and LSTs in a cohort of primary schools in the West of Ireland. Using a mixed methods approach, the study sought to establish the nature and extent of collaboration amongst these teachers and to identify the benefits and barriers to implementation.The findings suggest that whilst teachers are increasingly aware of the value of collaboration, its implementation is largely aspirational, with a series of challenges relating to time constraints, ad hoc planning and limited professional development opportunities most commonly identified as constraints to a consistent approach. The article considers the consequences of this shortfall and options for improved engagement between teachers are identified.
LanguageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Inclusive Education
Volume20
Issue number10
Early online date29 Feb 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2016

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inclusion
classroom
teacher
resources
learning
special educational needs
Ireland
Classroom Practice
Inclusion
Resources
number of children
school
primary school
pupil
experience
expertise
planning
Teaching
Education
community

Keywords

  • teachers
  • collaboration
  • teaching support
  • inclusion
  • special educational needs

Cite this

@article{f57e02ce098e43dd9528bbc18b95002e,
title = "Collaborative classroom practice for inclusion: perspectives of classroom teachers and learning support/resource teachers",
abstract = "Collaborative practice is integral to effective inclusion. Within schools, teacher collaboration can foster communities of practice through a series of professional relationships that enhance the educational experience and learning outcomes of pupils with special educational needs (SEN). In Ireland, Learning Support Teachers (LSTs) and Resource Teachers (RTs) provide additional support to the increasing numbers of children with SEN in mainstream classrooms. Working alongside Classroom Teachers (CTs), this tripartite of teaching expertise represents an opportunity for whole-school and classroom-based approaches to successful collaborative, inclusive practice.This article describes the perceptions and experiences of collaborative practice between primary CTs, RTs and LSTs in a cohort of primary schools in the West of Ireland. Using a mixed methods approach, the study sought to establish the nature and extent of collaboration amongst these teachers and to identify the benefits and barriers to implementation.The findings suggest that whilst teachers are increasingly aware of the value of collaboration, its implementation is largely aspirational, with a series of challenges relating to time constraints, ad hoc planning and limited professional development opportunities most commonly identified as constraints to a consistent approach. The article considers the consequences of this shortfall and options for improved engagement between teachers are identified.",
keywords = "teachers, collaboration, teaching support, inclusion, special educational needs",
author = "Monica Mulholland and Una O'Connor",
note = "Reference text: Ainscow, Mel, and Abha Sandhill. 2010. “Developing Inclusive Education Systems: The Role of Organisational Cultures and Leadership.” International Journal of Inclusive Education 14 (4): 401–416. doi:10.1080/ 13603110802504903. Armstrong, Ann Cheryl, Derrick Armstrong, and Ilektra Spandagou. 2012. Inclusive Education. International Policy and Practice. London: SAGE. Banks, Joanne, and Selina McCoy. 2011. A Study on the Prevalence of Special Educational Needs. Meath: NCSE. Blecker, Norma S., and Norma J. Boakes. 2010. “Creating a Learning Environment for all Children: Are Teachers Able and Willing?” International Journal of Inclusive Education 14 (5): 435–447. doi:10.1080/13603110802504937. Boyle, Christopher, Brooke Scriven, Sara Durning, and Carissa Downes. 2011b. “Facilitating the Learning of All Students: ‘Professional Positive’ of Inclusive Practice in Australian Primary Schools.” Support for Learning 26 (2): 72–78. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9604.2011.01480.x. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF INCLUSIVE EDUCATION 11 Downloaded by [Ulster University Library] at 05:48 02 March 2016 Boyle, Christopher, Keith Topping, Divya Jindal-Snape, and Brahm Norwich. 2011a. “The Importance of Peer Support for Teaching Staff When Including Children with Special Educational Needs.” School Psychology International 33 (2): 167–184. doi:10.1177/0143034311415783. CRA (Children’s Right Alliance). 2015. Report Card 2015. Dublin: Children’s Rights Alliance. Damore, Sharon, J. and Christopher Murray. 2008. Urban Elementary School Teachers’ Perspectives Regarding Collaborative Teaching Practices. Remedial and Special Education, 30 (4): 234–244. doi:10.1177/ 9741932508321007. DES (Department of Education and Science). 2000. Learning Support Guidelines. Dublin: The Stationery Office. DES (Department of Education and Science). 2002. “Circular SP ED 08/02. Applications For Full-Time or Part-Time Resource Teacher Support to Address the Special Education Needs of Children with Disabilities.” Athlone, Co. Westmeath: DES. DES (Department of Education and Science). 2003. “Circular 24/03. Allocation of Resources for Pupils with Special Educational Needs in National Schools.” Athlone, Co. Westmeath: DES. DES (Department of Education and Science). 2005. “Special Education Circular SP ED 02/05. Organisation of Teaching Resources for Pupils who Need Additional Support in Mainstream Primary Schools.” Athlone, Co. Westmeath: DES. DES (Department of Education and Science). 2007. Special Educational Needs. A Continuum of Support. Guidelines for Teachers. Dublin: The Stationery Office. DES (Department of Education and Skills). 2014. “Circular No 0070/2014. Circular to the Management Authorities of Secondary, Community and Comprehensive Schools and the Chief Executive Officers of the Education and Training Boards. Guidance for Post-Primary Schools on the Provision of Resource Teaching and Learning Support.” Athlone, Co. Westmeath: DES. DES (Department of Education and Skills). 2015. “Pilot Project to Support the Development of a New Model for Allocating Additional Teaching Resources to Schools for Pupils with Special Educational Needs.” Press Release, 15 September 2015. Dublin: DES. Devecchi, Cristina, Filippo Dettorib, Mary Dovestona, Paul Sedgwicka, and Johnston Jamenta. 2012. “Inclusive Classrooms in Italy and England: The Role of Support Teachers and Teaching Assistants.” European Journal of Special Needs Education 27 (2): 171–184. doi:10.1080/08856257.2011.645587. Egodawatte, Gunawardena, Douglas McDougall, and Dorian Stoilescu. 2011. “The Effects of Teacher Collaboration in Grade 9 Applied Mathematics.” Educational Research for Policy and Practice 10 (3): 189–209. doi:10.1007/s10671- 011-9104-y. Farrell, Anne Marie, and {\'A}ine O’Neill O’Neill. 2012. “Learning Support/Resource Teachers in Mainstream Post- Primary Schools: Their Perception of the Role in Relation to Subject Teachers. In Reach.” Journal of Special Needs Education in Ireland 25 (2): 92–103. Florian, Lani, and Holly Linklater. 2010. “Preparing Teachers for Inclusive Education: Using Inclusive Pedagogy to Enhance Teaching and Learning for All.” Cambridge Journal of Education 40 (4): 369–386. doi:10.1080/ 0305764X.2010.526588. Florian, Lani, and Martyn Rouse. 2010. “Teachers’ Professional Learning and Inclusive Practice.” In Confronting Obstacles to Inclusion: International Responses to Developing Inclusive Education, edited by Richard Rose, 185– 199. London: Routledge. Forlin, Chris. 2010. “Teacher Education for Inclusion.” In Confronting Obstacles to Inclusion: International Responses to Developing Inclusive Education, edited by Richard Rose, 155–70. London: Routledge. Friend, Marilyn, and Lynne Cook. 2010. “Co-Teaching: An Illustration of the Complexity of Collaboration in Special Education.” Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation 20 (1): 9–27. doi:10.1080/10474410903535380. Gleeson, Jim. 2010. Curriculum in Context: Partnership, Power and Praxis in Ireland. Bern: Peter Lang AG, International Academic. Hang, Qi, and Karen Rabren. 2009. “An Examination of Co-Teaching. Perspectives and Efficacy Indicators.” Remedial and Special Education 30 (5): 259–268. doi:10.1177/0741932508321018. Hesjedal, Elisabeth, Hilde Hetland, Anette Christine Iversen, and Terje Manger. 2015. “Interprofessional Collaboration as a Means of including Children at Risk: An Analysis of Norwegian Educational Policy Documents.” International Journal of Inclusive Education. doi:10.1080/13603116.2015.1057241. Horn, Ilana Seidel, and Judith Warren Little. 2010. “Attending to Problems of Practice: Routines and Resources for Professional Learning in Teachers’ Workplace Interactions.” American Educational Research Journal 47 (1): 181–217. doi:10.3102/0002831209345158. Hwang, Yoon-Suk, and David Evans. 2011. “Attitudes Towards Inclusion: Gaps Between Belief and Practice.” International Journal of Special Education 26 (1): 136–146. Kaldi, Stavroula, Diamanto Filippatoud, and Barbara Anthopoulou. 2013. “The Effectiveness of Structured Co-operative Teaching and Learning in Greek Primary School Classrooms.” Education 3–13 42 (6): 621–636. doi:10.1080/ 03004279.2012.75023. 12 M. MULHOLLAND AND U. O’CONNOR Downloaded by [Ulster University Library] at 05:48 02 March 2016 Kauffman, James M., and Timothy J. Landrum. 2009. “Politics, Civil Rights, and Disproportional Identification of Students with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders.” Exceptionality 17 (4): 177–188. doi:10.1080/ 09362830903231903. Keating, Stephanie, and Una O’Connor. 2012. “The Shifting Role of the Special Needs Assistant in Irish Classrooms: A Time for Change?” European Journal of Special Needs Education 27 (4): 533–544. doi:10.1080/08856257.2012. 711960. Kinsella, William, Lelia Murtagh, and Joyce Senior. 2014. Review of NCSE Resource Allocation Process and Evaluation of Deployment of Resources in Schools. NCSE Research Report No. 18. Meath: NCSE. Lindqvist, G., C. Nilholm, L. Almqvist, and G. M. Wetso. 2011. “Different Agendas? The Views of Different Occupational Groups on Special Needs Education.” European Journal of Special Needs Education 26 (2): 143–157. MacGiolla Ph{\'a}draig, Brian. 2007. “Towards Inclusion: The Development of Provision for Pupils with Special Educational Needs in Ireland from 1991–2004.” Irish Educational Studies 26 (3): 289–300. doi:10.1080/ 03323310701491562. Mitchell, David. 2008. What Really Works in Special and Inclusive Education: Using Evidence-Based Teaching Strategies. London: Routledge. Mitchell, David. 2014. What Really Works in Special and Inclusive Education: Using evidence-based Teaching Strategies. 2nd ed. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. Moolenaar, Nienke M., Peter J. C. Sleegers, and Alan J. Daly. 2012. “Teaming Up: Linking Collaboration Networks, Collective Efficacy and Student Achievement.” Teaching and Teacher Education 28 (2): 251–262. doi:10.1016/j. tate.2011.10.001. Murawski, Wendy W. 2010. Collaborative Teaching in Elementary Schools. Making the Co-Teaching Marriage Work! Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. NCSE (National Council for Special Education). 2006. Implementation Report: Plan for the Phased Implementation of the EPSEN Act 2004. Meath: NCSE. NCSE (National Council for Special Education). 2011. Inclusive Education Framework. Guidance for Schools on the Inclusion of Pupils with Special Educational Needs. Meath: Trim, Co., NCSE. Nel, Mirna, Petra Engelbrecht, Norma Nel and Dan Tlale. 2014. South African Teachers’ Views of Collaboration Within an Inclusive Education System. International Journal of Inclusive Education 18 (9): 903–917. doi:10. 1080/13603116.2013.858770. Norwich, Brahm. 2008. Dilemmas of Difference, Inclusion and Disability. London: Routledge. Obiakor, Festus E., Mateba Harris, Kagendo Mutua, Anthony Rotatori, and Bob Algozzine. 2012. “Making Inclusion Work in General Education Classrooms.” Education and Treatment of Children 35 (3): 477–490. doi:10.1353/etc. 2012.0020. O’Connor, Una, Ulf Hansson, and Stephanie Keating. 2012. Capacity-Building for Inclusion: The Role and Contribution of Special Needs Assistants and Classroom Assistants in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Coleraine: University of Ulster, Children and Youth Programme. O’Connor, Una, Roy McConkey, and Brendan Hartop. 2005. “Parental Views on the Statutory Assessment and Educational Planning for Children with Special Educational Needs.” European Journal of Special Needs Education 20 (3): 251–269. doi:10.1080/08856250500155998. O’Gorman, Elizabeth, and Sheelagh Drudy. 2010. “Addressing the Professional Development Needs of Teachers Working in the Area of Special Education/Inclusion in Mainstream Schools in Ireland.” Journal of Research in Special Educational Needs 10 (1): 157–167. doi:10.1111/j.1471-3802.2010.01161.x. Oliver, Mike, and Colin Barnes. 2010. “Disability Studies, Disabled People and the Struggle for Inclusion.” British Journal of Sociology of Education 31 (5): 547–560. doi:10.1080/01425692.2010.500088. Pfeifer, Michael, and Heinz Gunter Holtappels. 2008. “Improving Learning in All-Day Schools: Results of a New Teaching Time Model.” European Education Research Journal 7 (2): 232–242. doi:10.2304/eerj.2008.7.2.232. Ring, Emer, and Joseph Travers. 2005. “Barriers to Inclusion: A Case Study of a Pupil with Severe Learning Difficulties in Ireland.” European Journal of Special Needs Education 20 (1): 41–56. doi:10.1080/0885625042000319070. Rose, Richard, Michael Shevlin, Eileen Winter, and Paul O’Raw. 2015. Project IRIS – Inclusive Research in Irish Schools. A Longitudinal Study of the Experiences of and Outcomes for Pupils with Special Educational Needs (SEN) in Irish Schools. NCSE Research Reports, No. 20. Meath: NCSE Scruggs, Thomas E., Margo A. Mastropieri, and Kimberly A. McDuffie. 2007. “Co-Teaching in Inclusive Classrooms: A Metasynthesis of Qualitative Research.” Exceptional Children 73 (4): 392–416. doi:10.1177/001440290707300401. Sharma, Umesh, Tim Loreman and Chris Forlin. 2012. “Measuring Teacher Efficacy to Implement Inclusive Practices.” Journal of Research in Special Educational Needs 12 (1): 12–21. doi:10.1111/j.1471-3802.2011.01200.x. Shevlin, Michael, Mairin Kenny, and Andrew Loxley. 2008. “A Time of Transition: Exploring Special Educational Provision in the Republic of Ireland.” Journal of Research in Special Educational Needs 8 (3): 141–152. doi:10. 1111/j.1471–3802.2008.0016x. Shevlin, Michael, Eileen Winter, and Paula Flynn. 2013. “Developing Inclusive Practice: Teacher Perceptions of Opportunities and Constraints in the Republic of Ireland.” International Journal of Inclusive Education 17 (10): 1119–1133. doi:10.1080/13603116.2012.742143. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF INCLUSIVE EDUCATION 13 Downloaded by [Ulster University Library] at 05:48 02 March 2016 Sileo, Jane M. 2011. “Co-Teaching: Getting to Know Your Partner.” Teaching Exceptional Children 43 (5): 32–38. Solis, Michael, Sharon Vaughan, Elizabeth Swanson, and Lisa McCulley. 2012. “Collaborative Models of Instruction: The Empirical Foundations of Inclusion and Co-teaching.” Psychology in the Schools 49 (5): 498–510. doi:10.1002/ pits.21606. Takala, Marjatta, Raija Pirttimaa, and Minna Tormanen. 2009. “Inclusive Special Education: The Role of Special Education Teachers in Finland.” British Journal of Special Education 36 (3): 162–173. Travers, Joseph. 2006. “Perceptions of Learning Support Teachers and Resource Teachers of Each Other’s Role in Irish Primary Schools.” Irish Educational Studies 25 (2): 155–169. doi:10.1080/03323310600737321. Travers, Joseph. 2010. “The Impact of the General Allocation Model Policy on Learning Support for Mathematics in Irish Primary Schools.” Journal of the Department of Education and Skills 55: 8–20. UN (United Nations). 2011. “Including the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in United Nations Programming at Country Level.” A Guidance Note for United Nations Country Teams and Implementing Partners. New York: United Nations. Valeo, Angela. 2008. “Inclusive Education Support Systems: Teacher and Administrator Views.” International Journal of Special Education 23 (2): 8–16. Ware, Jean, Cathal Butler, Christopher Robertson, Margaret O’Donnell, and Magi Gould. 2011. Access to the Curriculum for Pupils with a Variety of Special Educational Needs in Mainstream Classes. An Exploration of Young Pupils in Primary Schools. NCSE Research Report No. 8. Meath: NCSE. Wenger, Etienne. 2011. Communities of Practice: A Brief Introduction. University of Oregon, National Science Foundation (US). Accessed December 2, 2015. https://scholarsbank.uoregon.edu/xmlui/handle/1794/11736. WHO (World Health Organisation). 2011. World Report on Disability. Geneva: WHO. Zigmond, Naomi, Amanda Kloo, and Victoria Volonino. 2009. “What, Where and How? Special Education in the Climate of Full Inclusion.” Exceptionality 17 (4): 189–204. doi:10.1080/09362830903231986. 14 M. MULHOLLAND AND U. O’CONNOR Downlo",
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N1 - Reference text: Ainscow, Mel, and Abha Sandhill. 2010. “Developing Inclusive Education Systems: The Role of Organisational Cultures and Leadership.” International Journal of Inclusive Education 14 (4): 401–416. doi:10.1080/ 13603110802504903. Armstrong, Ann Cheryl, Derrick Armstrong, and Ilektra Spandagou. 2012. Inclusive Education. International Policy and Practice. London: SAGE. Banks, Joanne, and Selina McCoy. 2011. A Study on the Prevalence of Special Educational Needs. Meath: NCSE. Blecker, Norma S., and Norma J. Boakes. 2010. “Creating a Learning Environment for all Children: Are Teachers Able and Willing?” International Journal of Inclusive Education 14 (5): 435–447. doi:10.1080/13603110802504937. Boyle, Christopher, Brooke Scriven, Sara Durning, and Carissa Downes. 2011b. “Facilitating the Learning of All Students: ‘Professional Positive’ of Inclusive Practice in Australian Primary Schools.” Support for Learning 26 (2): 72–78. doi:10.1111/j.1467-9604.2011.01480.x. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF INCLUSIVE EDUCATION 11 Downloaded by [Ulster University Library] at 05:48 02 March 2016 Boyle, Christopher, Keith Topping, Divya Jindal-Snape, and Brahm Norwich. 2011a. “The Importance of Peer Support for Teaching Staff When Including Children with Special Educational Needs.” School Psychology International 33 (2): 167–184. doi:10.1177/0143034311415783. CRA (Children’s Right Alliance). 2015. Report Card 2015. Dublin: Children’s Rights Alliance. Damore, Sharon, J. and Christopher Murray. 2008. Urban Elementary School Teachers’ Perspectives Regarding Collaborative Teaching Practices. Remedial and Special Education, 30 (4): 234–244. doi:10.1177/ 9741932508321007. DES (Department of Education and Science). 2000. Learning Support Guidelines. Dublin: The Stationery Office. DES (Department of Education and Science). 2002. “Circular SP ED 08/02. Applications For Full-Time or Part-Time Resource Teacher Support to Address the Special Education Needs of Children with Disabilities.” Athlone, Co. Westmeath: DES. DES (Department of Education and Science). 2003. “Circular 24/03. Allocation of Resources for Pupils with Special Educational Needs in National Schools.” Athlone, Co. Westmeath: DES. DES (Department of Education and Science). 2005. “Special Education Circular SP ED 02/05. Organisation of Teaching Resources for Pupils who Need Additional Support in Mainstream Primary Schools.” Athlone, Co. Westmeath: DES. DES (Department of Education and Science). 2007. Special Educational Needs. A Continuum of Support. Guidelines for Teachers. Dublin: The Stationery Office. DES (Department of Education and Skills). 2014. “Circular No 0070/2014. Circular to the Management Authorities of Secondary, Community and Comprehensive Schools and the Chief Executive Officers of the Education and Training Boards. Guidance for Post-Primary Schools on the Provision of Resource Teaching and Learning Support.” Athlone, Co. Westmeath: DES. DES (Department of Education and Skills). 2015. “Pilot Project to Support the Development of a New Model for Allocating Additional Teaching Resources to Schools for Pupils with Special Educational Needs.” Press Release, 15 September 2015. Dublin: DES. Devecchi, Cristina, Filippo Dettorib, Mary Dovestona, Paul Sedgwicka, and Johnston Jamenta. 2012. “Inclusive Classrooms in Italy and England: The Role of Support Teachers and Teaching Assistants.” European Journal of Special Needs Education 27 (2): 171–184. doi:10.1080/08856257.2011.645587. Egodawatte, Gunawardena, Douglas McDougall, and Dorian Stoilescu. 2011. “The Effects of Teacher Collaboration in Grade 9 Applied Mathematics.” Educational Research for Policy and Practice 10 (3): 189–209. doi:10.1007/s10671- 011-9104-y. Farrell, Anne Marie, and Áine O’Neill O’Neill. 2012. “Learning Support/Resource Teachers in Mainstream Post- Primary Schools: Their Perception of the Role in Relation to Subject Teachers. In Reach.” Journal of Special Needs Education in Ireland 25 (2): 92–103. Florian, Lani, and Holly Linklater. 2010. “Preparing Teachers for Inclusive Education: Using Inclusive Pedagogy to Enhance Teaching and Learning for All.” Cambridge Journal of Education 40 (4): 369–386. doi:10.1080/ 0305764X.2010.526588. Florian, Lani, and Martyn Rouse. 2010. “Teachers’ Professional Learning and Inclusive Practice.” In Confronting Obstacles to Inclusion: International Responses to Developing Inclusive Education, edited by Richard Rose, 185– 199. London: Routledge. Forlin, Chris. 2010. “Teacher Education for Inclusion.” In Confronting Obstacles to Inclusion: International Responses to Developing Inclusive Education, edited by Richard Rose, 155–70. London: Routledge. Friend, Marilyn, and Lynne Cook. 2010. “Co-Teaching: An Illustration of the Complexity of Collaboration in Special Education.” Journal of Educational and Psychological Consultation 20 (1): 9–27. doi:10.1080/10474410903535380. Gleeson, Jim. 2010. Curriculum in Context: Partnership, Power and Praxis in Ireland. Bern: Peter Lang AG, International Academic. Hang, Qi, and Karen Rabren. 2009. “An Examination of Co-Teaching. Perspectives and Efficacy Indicators.” Remedial and Special Education 30 (5): 259–268. doi:10.1177/0741932508321018. Hesjedal, Elisabeth, Hilde Hetland, Anette Christine Iversen, and Terje Manger. 2015. “Interprofessional Collaboration as a Means of including Children at Risk: An Analysis of Norwegian Educational Policy Documents.” International Journal of Inclusive Education. doi:10.1080/13603116.2015.1057241. Horn, Ilana Seidel, and Judith Warren Little. 2010. “Attending to Problems of Practice: Routines and Resources for Professional Learning in Teachers’ Workplace Interactions.” American Educational Research Journal 47 (1): 181–217. doi:10.3102/0002831209345158. Hwang, Yoon-Suk, and David Evans. 2011. “Attitudes Towards Inclusion: Gaps Between Belief and Practice.” International Journal of Special Education 26 (1): 136–146. Kaldi, Stavroula, Diamanto Filippatoud, and Barbara Anthopoulou. 2013. “The Effectiveness of Structured Co-operative Teaching and Learning in Greek Primary School Classrooms.” Education 3–13 42 (6): 621–636. doi:10.1080/ 03004279.2012.75023. 12 M. MULHOLLAND AND U. O’CONNOR Downloaded by [Ulster University Library] at 05:48 02 March 2016 Kauffman, James M., and Timothy J. Landrum. 2009. “Politics, Civil Rights, and Disproportional Identification of Students with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders.” Exceptionality 17 (4): 177–188. doi:10.1080/ 09362830903231903. Keating, Stephanie, and Una O’Connor. 2012. “The Shifting Role of the Special Needs Assistant in Irish Classrooms: A Time for Change?” European Journal of Special Needs Education 27 (4): 533–544. doi:10.1080/08856257.2012. 711960. Kinsella, William, Lelia Murtagh, and Joyce Senior. 2014. Review of NCSE Resource Allocation Process and Evaluation of Deployment of Resources in Schools. NCSE Research Report No. 18. Meath: NCSE. Lindqvist, G., C. Nilholm, L. Almqvist, and G. M. Wetso. 2011. “Different Agendas? The Views of Different Occupational Groups on Special Needs Education.” European Journal of Special Needs Education 26 (2): 143–157. MacGiolla Phádraig, Brian. 2007. “Towards Inclusion: The Development of Provision for Pupils with Special Educational Needs in Ireland from 1991–2004.” Irish Educational Studies 26 (3): 289–300. doi:10.1080/ 03323310701491562. Mitchell, David. 2008. What Really Works in Special and Inclusive Education: Using Evidence-Based Teaching Strategies. London: Routledge. Mitchell, David. 2014. What Really Works in Special and Inclusive Education: Using evidence-based Teaching Strategies. 2nd ed. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. Moolenaar, Nienke M., Peter J. C. Sleegers, and Alan J. Daly. 2012. “Teaming Up: Linking Collaboration Networks, Collective Efficacy and Student Achievement.” Teaching and Teacher Education 28 (2): 251–262. doi:10.1016/j. tate.2011.10.001. Murawski, Wendy W. 2010. Collaborative Teaching in Elementary Schools. Making the Co-Teaching Marriage Work! Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. NCSE (National Council for Special Education). 2006. Implementation Report: Plan for the Phased Implementation of the EPSEN Act 2004. Meath: NCSE. NCSE (National Council for Special Education). 2011. Inclusive Education Framework. Guidance for Schools on the Inclusion of Pupils with Special Educational Needs. Meath: Trim, Co., NCSE. Nel, Mirna, Petra Engelbrecht, Norma Nel and Dan Tlale. 2014. South African Teachers’ Views of Collaboration Within an Inclusive Education System. International Journal of Inclusive Education 18 (9): 903–917. doi:10. 1080/13603116.2013.858770. Norwich, Brahm. 2008. Dilemmas of Difference, Inclusion and Disability. London: Routledge. Obiakor, Festus E., Mateba Harris, Kagendo Mutua, Anthony Rotatori, and Bob Algozzine. 2012. “Making Inclusion Work in General Education Classrooms.” Education and Treatment of Children 35 (3): 477–490. doi:10.1353/etc. 2012.0020. O’Connor, Una, Ulf Hansson, and Stephanie Keating. 2012. Capacity-Building for Inclusion: The Role and Contribution of Special Needs Assistants and Classroom Assistants in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Coleraine: University of Ulster, Children and Youth Programme. O’Connor, Una, Roy McConkey, and Brendan Hartop. 2005. “Parental Views on the Statutory Assessment and Educational Planning for Children with Special Educational Needs.” European Journal of Special Needs Education 20 (3): 251–269. doi:10.1080/08856250500155998. O’Gorman, Elizabeth, and Sheelagh Drudy. 2010. “Addressing the Professional Development Needs of Teachers Working in the Area of Special Education/Inclusion in Mainstream Schools in Ireland.” Journal of Research in Special Educational Needs 10 (1): 157–167. doi:10.1111/j.1471-3802.2010.01161.x. Oliver, Mike, and Colin Barnes. 2010. “Disability Studies, Disabled People and the Struggle for Inclusion.” British Journal of Sociology of Education 31 (5): 547–560. doi:10.1080/01425692.2010.500088. Pfeifer, Michael, and Heinz Gunter Holtappels. 2008. “Improving Learning in All-Day Schools: Results of a New Teaching Time Model.” European Education Research Journal 7 (2): 232–242. doi:10.2304/eerj.2008.7.2.232. Ring, Emer, and Joseph Travers. 2005. “Barriers to Inclusion: A Case Study of a Pupil with Severe Learning Difficulties in Ireland.” European Journal of Special Needs Education 20 (1): 41–56. doi:10.1080/0885625042000319070. Rose, Richard, Michael Shevlin, Eileen Winter, and Paul O’Raw. 2015. Project IRIS – Inclusive Research in Irish Schools. A Longitudinal Study of the Experiences of and Outcomes for Pupils with Special Educational Needs (SEN) in Irish Schools. NCSE Research Reports, No. 20. Meath: NCSE Scruggs, Thomas E., Margo A. Mastropieri, and Kimberly A. McDuffie. 2007. “Co-Teaching in Inclusive Classrooms: A Metasynthesis of Qualitative Research.” Exceptional Children 73 (4): 392–416. doi:10.1177/001440290707300401. Sharma, Umesh, Tim Loreman and Chris Forlin. 2012. “Measuring Teacher Efficacy to Implement Inclusive Practices.” Journal of Research in Special Educational Needs 12 (1): 12–21. doi:10.1111/j.1471-3802.2011.01200.x. Shevlin, Michael, Mairin Kenny, and Andrew Loxley. 2008. “A Time of Transition: Exploring Special Educational Provision in the Republic of Ireland.” Journal of Research in Special Educational Needs 8 (3): 141–152. doi:10. 1111/j.1471–3802.2008.0016x. Shevlin, Michael, Eileen Winter, and Paula Flynn. 2013. “Developing Inclusive Practice: Teacher Perceptions of Opportunities and Constraints in the Republic of Ireland.” International Journal of Inclusive Education 17 (10): 1119–1133. doi:10.1080/13603116.2012.742143. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF INCLUSIVE EDUCATION 13 Downloaded by [Ulster University Library] at 05:48 02 March 2016 Sileo, Jane M. 2011. “Co-Teaching: Getting to Know Your Partner.” Teaching Exceptional Children 43 (5): 32–38. Solis, Michael, Sharon Vaughan, Elizabeth Swanson, and Lisa McCulley. 2012. “Collaborative Models of Instruction: The Empirical Foundations of Inclusion and Co-teaching.” Psychology in the Schools 49 (5): 498–510. doi:10.1002/ pits.21606. Takala, Marjatta, Raija Pirttimaa, and Minna Tormanen. 2009. “Inclusive Special Education: The Role of Special Education Teachers in Finland.” British Journal of Special Education 36 (3): 162–173. Travers, Joseph. 2006. “Perceptions of Learning Support Teachers and Resource Teachers of Each Other’s Role in Irish Primary Schools.” Irish Educational Studies 25 (2): 155–169. doi:10.1080/03323310600737321. Travers, Joseph. 2010. “The Impact of the General Allocation Model Policy on Learning Support for Mathematics in Irish Primary Schools.” Journal of the Department of Education and Skills 55: 8–20. UN (United Nations). 2011. “Including the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in United Nations Programming at Country Level.” A Guidance Note for United Nations Country Teams and Implementing Partners. New York: United Nations. Valeo, Angela. 2008. “Inclusive Education Support Systems: Teacher and Administrator Views.” International Journal of Special Education 23 (2): 8–16. 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PY - 2016/3

Y1 - 2016/3

N2 - Collaborative practice is integral to effective inclusion. Within schools, teacher collaboration can foster communities of practice through a series of professional relationships that enhance the educational experience and learning outcomes of pupils with special educational needs (SEN). In Ireland, Learning Support Teachers (LSTs) and Resource Teachers (RTs) provide additional support to the increasing numbers of children with SEN in mainstream classrooms. Working alongside Classroom Teachers (CTs), this tripartite of teaching expertise represents an opportunity for whole-school and classroom-based approaches to successful collaborative, inclusive practice.This article describes the perceptions and experiences of collaborative practice between primary CTs, RTs and LSTs in a cohort of primary schools in the West of Ireland. Using a mixed methods approach, the study sought to establish the nature and extent of collaboration amongst these teachers and to identify the benefits and barriers to implementation.The findings suggest that whilst teachers are increasingly aware of the value of collaboration, its implementation is largely aspirational, with a series of challenges relating to time constraints, ad hoc planning and limited professional development opportunities most commonly identified as constraints to a consistent approach. The article considers the consequences of this shortfall and options for improved engagement between teachers are identified.

AB - Collaborative practice is integral to effective inclusion. Within schools, teacher collaboration can foster communities of practice through a series of professional relationships that enhance the educational experience and learning outcomes of pupils with special educational needs (SEN). In Ireland, Learning Support Teachers (LSTs) and Resource Teachers (RTs) provide additional support to the increasing numbers of children with SEN in mainstream classrooms. Working alongside Classroom Teachers (CTs), this tripartite of teaching expertise represents an opportunity for whole-school and classroom-based approaches to successful collaborative, inclusive practice.This article describes the perceptions and experiences of collaborative practice between primary CTs, RTs and LSTs in a cohort of primary schools in the West of Ireland. Using a mixed methods approach, the study sought to establish the nature and extent of collaboration amongst these teachers and to identify the benefits and barriers to implementation.The findings suggest that whilst teachers are increasingly aware of the value of collaboration, its implementation is largely aspirational, with a series of challenges relating to time constraints, ad hoc planning and limited professional development opportunities most commonly identified as constraints to a consistent approach. The article considers the consequences of this shortfall and options for improved engagement between teachers are identified.

KW - teachers

KW - collaboration

KW - teaching support

KW - inclusion

KW - special educational needs

U2 - 10.1080/13603116.2016.1145266

DO - 10.1080/13603116.2016.1145266

M3 - Article

VL - 20

JO - International Journal of Inclusive Education

T2 - International Journal of Inclusive Education

JF - International Journal of Inclusive Education

SN - 1360-3116

IS - 10

ER -