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ERIC Number: EJ991199
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-May
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 15
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1053-4512
Striving for Inclusive Education in the Czech Republic
Strnadova, Iva; Hajkova, Vanda
Intervention in School and Clinic, v47 n5 p307-311 May 2012
Inclusive education does not have a strong history in the Czech Republic. Initial efforts to educate students with different types of disabilities within the mainstream education system in the Czech Republic date back to the mid-20th century. These efforts were primarily from parent initiatives, which in some cases resulted in ensuring that the education of every child in mainstream schools took place (Vitkova, 2003). The 1990s were marked by a few important tendencies within the educational system, such as the strengthening of economical and educational autonomy of schools, the diversification of schools' educational programs, the increase of a competitive environment within education, efforts to make schools more attractive, and heightened integration efforts to include students or groups of students into mainstream schools. However, despite these efforts, between the school years 1989-1990 and 1995-1996 there were approximately 3.3% students placed in special schools based on the recommendation from professionals and special education assessment. It is only since 2000 that glimpses of inclusive education policy have appeared in official Czech educational documents. More recently, in March 2010, the Czech government adopted the National Action Plan for Inclusive Education. The current state of the Czech educational system is demonstrated by the withdrawal of efforts to support students' diversity within mainstream schools and the decrease of appreciation for schools' efforts to support inclusion. However, there are many enthusiastic education professionals and parents who are fighting to make the Czech educational system more inclusive. The education community is also aware of the changes needed within the area of pre-service teacher training to prepare mainstream teachers for the needs of all their students. The changes taking place in this area within Czech universities are on a local level, and there are new courses in inclusive education being adopted within the accreditation process. The model described in this article focuses on the course "The Foundations of Inclusive Education" to prepare pre-service teachers for teaching heterogeneous groups in mainstream schools. One of the key assumptions in bringing inclusive education into reality for mainstream schools is to improve pre-service teacher preparation. The authors believe that the central point of students' pre-service preparation is the possibility to get to know the schools' functioning areas based on their culture and everyday practice. These changes are feasible at schools given their formal setting and formal culture, practical conditions, and informal internal life.
SAGE Publications and Hammill Institute on Disabilities. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail: journals@sagepub.com; Web site: http://sagepub.com
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Czech Republic