NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1048764
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Dec
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0952-3383
Changing Policy and Legislation in Special and Inclusive Education: A Perspective from Northern Ireland
Smith, Ron
British Journal of Special Education, v41 n4 p382-402 Dec 2014
It is now 15 years since the signing of the 1998 Belfast (or "Good Friday") Peace Agreement which committed all participants to exclusively democratic and peaceful means of resolving differences, and towards a shared and inclusive society defined by the principles of respect for diversity, equality and the interdependence of people. In particular, it committed participants to the protection and vindication of the human rights of all. This is, therefore, a precipitous time to undertake a probing analysis of educational reforms in Northern Ireland associated with provision in the areas of inclusion and special needs education. Consequently, by drawing upon analytical tools and perspectives derived from critical policy analysis, this article, by Ron Smith from the School of Education, Queen's University Belfast, discusses the policy cycle associated with the proposed legislation entitled "Every School a Good School: the way forward for special educational needs and inclusion." It examines how this policy text structures key concepts such as "inclusion", "additional educational needs" and "barriers to learning", and how the proposals attempt to resolve the dilemma of commonality and difference. Conceived under direct rule from Westminster (April 2006), issued for consultation when devolved powers to a Northern Ireland Assembly had been restored, and with the final proposals yet to be made public, this targeted educational strategy tells a fascinating story of the past, present and likely future of special needs education in Northern Ireland. Before offering an account of this work, it is placed within some broader ecological frameworks.
Wiley-Blackwell. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8598; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (Northern Ireland)