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DOI

10.14221/ajte.2018v43n3.7

Abstract

Despite extensive changes in early childhood inclusive education policy and practice, various barriers continue to inhibit access and participation of children with special needs in inclusive schools. Often mentioned barriers include negative beliefs, lack of understanding of inclusive pedagogy and the effectiveness of professional development to improve teacher knowledge to reduce these barriers. This study reports on a Thai Bureau of Special Education professional development partnership program with an Australian inclusive school in which 16 early childhood teachers from Thailand participated. This community of practice inquiry project generated qualitative data from pre- and post-professional workshops semi-structured interviews and analysis of teachers’ professional learning journals during the inquiry phases of the project. Thematic analysis of the data showed that the international professional learning immersion program exerted an influential impact on the teachers who participated suggesting; teachers developed better understandings of children with special education needs by creating a mindset for change.


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Link to publisher version (DOI)

10.14221/ajte.2018v43n3.7