How Inclusion Will Affect Leadership

Inclusion is a reality in many districts, but how will this affect school leaders? Principals, special education directors, and staff at the district level will be responsible of leading the change to fully include students in their district. According to Voltz and Collins (2010) special education administrators need to know how to implement inclusion successfully in a standard based environment. The administrators will need leadership and vision in the guidance of not only special education teachers, but mainstream teachers as well. These leaders will need new skills to carry out that task.

The No Child Left Behind Legislation has mandated that all students meet certain standards of education regardless of disability. Though seen unrealistic by many, the goal is still the benchmark in which schools are graded for their effectiveness to educate. Collins cites Wigle and Wilcox (2002) by reporting that when 240 special education special education administrators were surveyed about the expectations of the Council for Exceptional Children the administrators felt they were only highly qualified in half the expectations. The lowest confidence was concerning collaboration, standards, and competencies.

One suggestion is offered by Lashley and Boscardin (2003). They contend that to be successful in the transformation to inclusion, the administrators need to integrate content from muli-cultural education, general education, and special education. Without this combination diverse students with disabilities will not be a successful endeavor in a standards based context. This combination will have to go beyond the CEC recommendations and will have to address equity issues, instructional leadership, and retention of those that have barriers to the change.

Innovative strategies will have to be implemented to prepare administrators for this change state Voltz and Collins (2010). The researchers that university faculty should find exemplary general education and special education who can collaborate and co-teach course work to present special education administrators who are working currently in the field. The study suggests an alignment with fieldwork that would provide experience in alignment and assessment of programs already set in place.

Comments 2 comments

CASE1WORKER profile image


about time too, the disabled have a lot to offer- as i say- i might struggle to hear you but i am not stupid

Sundaymoments profile image

Sundaymoments 5 years ago from United States

I understand the difficulties in special education combined with mainstreaming.

I have a child that has special education needs, however has been implemented into a mainstream program where there is a mix of special needs children and mainstream children. I have seen my child’s grades go down and also I have her frustration level increase considerable.

I believe that mainstreaming children who have special needs is a much more delicate matter than educators realize, hence for the special needs children suffer caused by lack of appropriate training by educators.

Though mainstreaming all children plays a great role in making sure that children with special needs suffer less bullying and profiling however I feel the right to the best education has been limited due to the lack of appropriate training within the educator’s knowledge to handle both mainstream as well as special needs.

Great Hub


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