Teachers coping with changes: Including students with disabilities in mainstream classes: An international view

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The study was designed to examine and compare British and Israeli teachers' perceptions, expectations, and needs regarding the inclusion process. In both countries, the inclusion movements support the rights of children to have their special educational needs identified and met through education legislation and the right of individuals with disabilities to equal opportunities. The sample consisted of 116 Israeli teachers and 140 British teachers in mainstream classes. The teachers' questionnaire consisted of seven open-ended questions dealing with the theoretical concept of inclusion, the advantages and disadvantages of the ideal model of inclusion, and indicators of the teachers' current situation in their classrooms. The results pointed to similarities and differences in the teachers' assessments of the factors that facilitate and hamper the inclusion process. While British teachers focused on non-disabled students, teachers and the educational system as facilitating inclusion, Israeli teachers emphasized the role of included students and of teachers, as those who impede the process. Most teachers in both countries preferred that students receive academic support outside of their classrooms. British teachers emphasized the advantages of inclusion for the entire class, and disadvantages to the students with LD; Israeli teachers focused on advantages to teachers and noted more disadvantages for non-disabled students and for teachers. These findings suggest that although the teachers evaluated the inclusion process in different ways and tended to implement it differently, most of the teachers, in both countries, support inclusion.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)91-103
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Special Education
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2004


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