Inclusive Education in Poland

In: Moving towards Inclusive Education

Abstract

This chapter gives an analysis of the theoretical background for inclusive education in Poland and discusses the current situation. Poland has signed and ratified virtually all major international instruments relating to persons with disabilities or children and young people with special educational needs. The most important of these include the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD, 2006), the European Agency for Special Needs and Inclusive Education (2011), the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union () and The Salamanca Statement (UNESCO, 1994), as well as many other recommendations of local importance. There are different understandings of inclusive education in Poland, though most agree that it is the real guarantee of equal rights and opportunities for all learners regardless of their abilities. It is also a chance for individual development for all participants in the educational process. Some definitions of ‘inclusive’ refer to the mainstreaming of children with diverse abilities in all aspects of schooling that children in general are able to access and enjoy. This definition is also present in the Polish educational system, but the system is now in a process of change. The new system includes pre-primary schools, eight-year primary schools and vocational and technical, general secondary and general art schools at the secondary level. Conditions of teachers’ work are discussed, as well as psychological and pedagogical support for students not only theoretically but with reference to what is actually happening in the country. The author’s own 3×6 system of inclusive education is presented, which emphasises educational processes that treat all pupils in the same manner, ensuring their full individual development and giving each the opportunity to achieve success. Such an education requires appropriate organisation. The 3×6 system comprises three different segments: (1) the learning environment, (2) the policy of a given educational institution and (3) working methods preferred by a given educational institution.

Moving towards Inclusive Education

Diverse National Engagements with Paradoxes of Policy and Practice

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