Developing an inclusive pedagogy approach for full-service schools: An action research approach
Full-service schools are fairly new institutions in South Africa which have been established in terms of Education White Paper 6 (Department of Education, 2001). Teachers in such schools are envisioned to have the knowledge, skills and expertise to practice an inclusive pedagogy. These full-service education institutions must have the capacity to provide for the full range of learning needs and to address barriers to learning. This requires special attention to the development of flexibility in teaching practices and styles through training, capacity building and the provision of support to learners and educators in these schools. However, the implementation of an inclusive pedagogy approach within inclusive education is reported by teachers in the FSS of this study as hampered by a myriad of challenges. This includes the lack of adequate training, support, resources and demanding contextual factors impacting on teaching and learning. The purpose of this study was to harness the good inclusive pedagogy practices and strategies that are implemented by teachers in a Full-Service School and extend these inclusive pedagogy practices to all FSS in South Africa through the development of an inclusive pedagogy guideline document. A case study design was used with a participatory action research approach (PAR) within a social constructivist paradigm where teachers were co-researchers in the development of the guideline. The participants and the researcher, within an Action Learning Set (ALS) worked collaboratively for the clarification of ideas, providing access to peer-feedback and promoting the sharing of diverse and alternate perspectives. Data was collected through a baseline questionnaire, classroom observations and document analysis, focus group discussions and reflective diaries. The researcher and participants formed the ALS to share ideas, engage in problem solving, brainstorm, produce artefacts, wrestle with difficult concepts, view and discuss most appropriate inclusive pedagogy approaches to teaching and learning. A first final draft was implemented and reviewed by the ALS with additions and amendments made which developed to the final inclusive pedagogy guideline document.
- Education