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The influence of teaching experience and professional development on Greek teachers' attitudes towards inclusion
University of Exeter. At the time of publication the author was at the University of York; City Liberal Studies, Thessaloniki
European Journal of Special Needs Education
Taylor & Francis
On the assumption that the successful implementation of any inclusive policy is largely dependent on educators being positive about it, a survey was undertaken into the attitudes of Greek teachers to inclusion. The 155 respondents were general education primary teachers drawn from one region of Northern Greece, with a proportion deliberately selected from schools identified as actively implementing inclusive programmes. The analysis revealed positive attitudes towards the general concept of inclusion but variable views on the difficulty of accommodating different types of disabilities in mainstream classrooms. Teachers who had been actively involved in teaching pupils with SEN held significantly more positive attitudes than their counterparts with little or no such experience. The analysis also demonstrated the importance of substantive long-term training in the formation of positive teacher attitudes towards inclusion. The paper concludes with recommendations for developing critical professional development courses that can result in attitudinal change and the formulation of genuinely inclusive practices.
This is a postprint of an article whose final and definitive form has been published in the European Journal of Special Needs Education© 2007 Copyright Taylor & Francis; European Journal of Special Needs Education is available online at http://www.informaworld.com
22 (4), pp. 367–389