The Economic and Political Influence on Student Mainstreaming
Leinhardt and Pallay (1982) researched the phenomenon of mainstreaming students who where at the lowest quartile of achievement. The study found, through an extensive literature review, that there are many variables that make a student successful in their academics. The authors stated that though these variables are important, ethically the least restrictive environment is chosen. The conclusion of the study suggested that it is not the setting that is important for the student, but the effective practices that the educators practice.
This study was followed up by Zigmond (2003). The author felt that the question of proper setting was not completely answered and that there is hardly any researched evidence that would discern a proper placement. The 'where' in the discussion of mainstreaming is not important to this author, instead the author wants the questions of where, for what, and for whom to be queried. The answer was not presented in this study, but Zigmond insisted that more research be implemented so that the placement model question can be revisited.
Kavale and Forness (2000) shed light on the history and influence of student mainstreaming when they reported on the debate of inclusion from the beginnings in 1975, through the Regulation Iniative of the 1980s, and the current debate about inclusion. There recommendations did not find a single solution of the debate, but the authors recommended that all possible venues of explanations and ideals be taken into account when inclusion is studied or discussed.
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