Understanding the Inclusion Classroom

Norfolk State University
Dr. Rinyka Allison
Presentation Date: 
Monday, January 7, 2013
Event or Conference: 
Presentation Type: 
Boyer's Domain: 
Presentation Location: 
700 Park Avenue
Norfolk, VA 23504
United States
Currently in the United States, over six million students are identified as students with disabilities, which is a 43% increase since 1989 (United States Department of Education, 2006). Of these six million students, 80% are considered to be fully mainstreamed into an inclusion setting. Current research indicates that general educators feel that mainstreaming students with disabilities is a problem because inclusion does not make sense in light of pressures from federal laws such as the No Child Left Behind Act, state legislatures, and the public at large to develop more rigorous academic standards and to improve the academic achievement of all students (Amrein, Berliner & Rideau, 2010). Quantitative research has been conducted on the attitudes and beliefs of general and special education teachers about inclusion and has exposed a lack of understanding of inclusion and how it is approached and applied in the classroom (Monahan, Marino, & Miller, 2001; Shade & Stewart, 2001; Begeny & Martens, 2007). However, few qualitative studies have explored and described the daily lived experiences of both general and special education teachers in the inclusion setting and how those lived experiences may possibly influence their attitudes and beliefs towards inclusion.