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ERIC Number: EJ915330
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Feb
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1360-3116
Problematising Policy: Conceptions of "Child", "Disabled" and "Parents" in Social Policy in England
Goodley, Dan; Runswick-Cole, Katherine
International Journal of Inclusive Education, v15 n1 p71-85 Feb 2011
Global policy for disabled children is currently experiencing a process of rapid change. In England, for example, the impetus for transformation has arisen from the government's acknowledgement that disabled children are disadvantaged. Indeed, the current policy for disabled children is also set within a wider international context in which disabled people and children are often positioned on the margins of society, excluded from education and care and living in poverty. This leads us to consider how the "disabled child" is conceptualised within policy. We pose this question with a project in mind, "Does every child matter, Post-Blair: Interconnections of disabled childhoods", a two-year project funded by the Economic and Social Research Council ( Part of our remit is to make sense of the lived realities of being a disabled child in Britain and here our concern is policy conceptions of "child", "disabled" and "parent" in social policy in England. Despite the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and its specific focusing on the needs of "children with disabilities" (Article 23), research suggests that the modest requirements of the convention remain largely unmet. The global landscape has also been shaped by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The Convention requires each country, which ratifies it, to submit regular reports on its progress. How these policies impact on the makings of disabled children and their families remains a key point of debate. Indeed, there is a danger that new policies that embrace neo-liberal models of citizenship and normative narratives of child development exclude disabled children from the very communities they purport to help shape. In this paper, we will take a critical look at how the "disabled child" is conceptualised and constituted in this era or global childhood citizenship with a specific focus on the UK. We consider the ways in which policies in the country draw on a problematic notion of "disabled" and "child", intrinsically recreate the tyranny of developmentalism and frame the mother as the key agent of social and developmental change. These discursive and conceptual resources are in danger of recreating an exclusionary policy context for disabled children and their families. (Contains 5 notes.)
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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 (England)