2. Key factors for establishing a strong inclusive ethos
2.2. Policies for an inclusive ethos and culture
Inclusive schools will develop a range of policies to set out their expectations. The most effective policies are developed with consultation between staff and families and children. They are not hidden in a folder in the Head Teacher’s office, they are widely shared and discussed with staff, parents and children so that everyone is working with them.
A school with an inclusive ethos and culture will have a clear policies about Inclusive education that set out:
- How they will admit children with disabilities to the school
- The support that teachers will provide in the classroom
- How they will monitor progress, share information and review pupils’ support needs
- How they will use resources and the learning environment for children with disabilities
- How they will encourage positive behaviour management
- The school expectations for positive non-discriminatory language and how they will establish inclusive attitudes and relationships between teachers, pupils and parents.
- How teachers will be supported in developing inclusive teaching practices through professional development programs.
- How the school will monitor the effectiveness of policies to support inclusivity.
- How they will consult with the child to find out about the support they need
- How they will work with parents and caregivers
- How they will work with other agencies
- The role of the inclusion support team
Activity 2.2 Policies for an inclusive ethos
Allow approximately 20 minutes for this activity
For a school that you know, select one of the points above and describe a policy that is in place. Write a short post on the Week 2 forum describing the policy and how it supports inclusive practice.
For example: ‘a school that I know shares information by having a short staff briefing every morning. As well as administrative issues, information is shared about students who are experiencing difficulties at home, or who need some extra support’.
Read some of the other posts and note down any policies that would be helpful in your school, or a school that you work with.
The first course ‘Inclusive Teaching and Learning’ focused on how all teachers can provide support in the classroom (no. 2). The rest of the activities this week will focus on how to create an inclusive ethos through policies on, positive behaviour management, using resources and the learning environment to support students with disabilities, using information to review pupils’ support needs and how teachers can act as role models (no 3-6). Next week the activities will focus on professional development and whole-school monitoring (7 and 8) and in the last week you will consider how schools can consult students and work with the wider community (9-12)