A post by Mary Hudson was deleted
Forums > Social Inclusion group discussion
Lets Generate an Agenda
I wonder if we should collectively use this space to generate some of the HOT TOPICS around this theme.
What are the big ticket items which impact upon the Principalship and need 'thinking out loud' around?
How does that sound for a process?
Can a school that is focussed on values education/ inclusion become a high performing school academically. Do we have some hard evidence that a focus on social/ moral/ ethical 'input' results in an 'output' which satisfies those who lilke narrow measures of educational 'success'?
I have added a resource - paper by Chris Ryan and Anastasia Sartbayena on Young Australians and social inclusion, published in the Australian Social Policy Journal. The paper presents research on the relationship between parental and family characteristics on a diverse set of indicators of social inclusion.
With respect to education, the authors note "the inclusion of schooling experience indicators, such as the incidence of suspensions and expulsions, school attendance patterns and participation in after-school activities, substantially reduced the lasting effect of prolonged income support exposure when growing up"
What is the best evidence base currently that school leaders can use to link the impact of particular educational strategies in building inclusiveness?
How do educators know whether or not particular educational strategies are effective in building inclusiveness? In the evidence based climate in which we operate it is vital leaders can measure the success or otherwise of particular strategies used. What sort of data is required? How to analyse? Strategies for improvement? This too can be a future agenda item.
Yes Mark. There is a great deal of evidence that shows a focus on values/ inclusion can result in high performing schools. The DEEWR Values Education project produced fantastic Australian based research around this. This wiould be a fabulous topic for discussion. How about "Inclusion and High Performing Schools" as an agenda item?"
Socioeconomic factors and the homes and communities students come from have a significant effect on their educational outcomes. This should not limit our expectations for these students. Timperley (paper uploaded) argues that appropriate teacher professional learning programs can change teachers' views from one where they believe that student problems are entrenched to one where teachers can see evidence that students can acquire new knowledge and skills when taught differently.
This supports Hattie's evidence that teachers are the most important factor in students' educational performance.
I think as part of this we should explore how student centred pedagogy can be transformative for all students.
I really like the information on your front page around 'Values that underpin inclusion' I think lots of people in counselor networks would like this...would you mind If I sent to a convenor of counsellor networks in SA...wonder how we penetrate counsellor or even CPCW networks?
Have done and CC'ed you in Mary. Have also made direct contact with a Principal currently undertaking a PhD in this field to drop by and contribute.
I'm in a mad rush- looking for a place to post an 'unshaped thought'-- it's around this big push for personalised learning and where strong understandings of inclusion and equitity sit as practical considerations for educator"
I'll shape it better later ciao
Libby, Mary and Karen...
"Socio-economic factors and the homes and communities students come from..." is a significant factor for us here in Qatar. Many of our "local" students here in our Public schools, are totally de-motivated from learning because of their enormous wealth, and have attitudes to match.
Why should they try hard at school when they can buy anything they want?? (Example: Had a 17 y.o. student suspended recently who was caught doing dohnuts in his car in the school carpark - it was a lime-green Maserati worth $500,000)
- We agree with Timperley et.al. and are working on far more student-centred pedagogy via our PD programs. (Example: Many schools here are working with "Reach Out To Asia" on iLearn projects as a way to change students thinking about the way they see themselves, other people, and reinforce the importance of their own Islamic values.)
You have raised a very interesting issue and one that is not often acknowledged in discussions about inclusion. I have spoken to teachers from mining areas in South Australia who raise similar issues. How can schools offer a curriculum that is relevant and engaging in these situations? I think authentic student centred pedagogy is part of the answer.....perhaps also focusing on a capabilities approach which underpins the Australian Curriculum and emphasises agency and the freedom and capacity to act in the world in ways that engage personal, social, and political aspirations is the way to go...... A big issue and very challenging. It would be interesting to raise this with Joanne Deppeler during the Blackboard session on March 21st.
Very interesting issues raised around setting agendas, Some of my thoughts in light of recent webinar and these issues.
The original school improvement and school effectiveness movement was prompted by protest against conventional explanations of educational failure, particularly those used to explain low educational achievement by students who were socially and/ or economically disadvantaged. It was argued that that schools can and should make a difference, regardless of social context. Subsequently, much of the school improvement / standards reform has become equated with improvement on narrow measures of achievement with measurable outcomes from standardised tests. The standard and accountability reforms have put high pressure on schools to achieve particular academic outcomes for all students and at the same time there have been parallel research movements in which university-school partnerships engage with schools in inquiry based approaches. Timperley, Earl, Ainscow and my own research over the last decade are all informed by this approach – with very positive outcomes for teacher professional learning as well as student learning.
As emphasised in my recent webinar the basic premise of this approach is that university researchers, school leaders collaborate with teachers in cycles of evidence- informed inquiry to better understand issues in their school as well as to inform decisions about what’s working and where to go next. This means that while NAPLAN results might to audit outcomes for particular students and in particular curriculum areas and to inform further investigation teachers focus on other forms of evidence for the inquiry - A variety of practical assessment evidence and data that can easily be incorporated into classroom and school activities.
However – a key question for current research is what happens when inquiry based approaches get appropriated to serve accountability and standards reform purposes? Though accountability measures may have created opportunities for a conversation about students who have been historically marginalized, they have reduced school professionals’ understandings of families and students to narrow test scores that need to be obtained and surveyed in the name of equity. In some cases particular ‘voices’ are privileged which in turn shapes priorities and agendas and what is measured and how. This, in turn, will influence what is and is not discussed and reported.
Thus my passion for ensuring that at the school context inquiry and other change strategies are informed by teachers, and other members of the school community. This does not mean that schools can not improve against ‘standards’- based reform measures but it does mean that they should not let standards reform determine the frame for their work nor be the sole measure for development.
Our evaluative evidence from the large-scale university-system partnerships involving networks of schools that I have lead have shown strong evidence that schools can develop an inquiry-informed agenda that has positive student learning outcomes on both NAPLAN as well as other school based measures of success (social competence, attendance along with teacher constructed measures of achievement that are more sensitive to learning with particular students).
The critical issue in my opinion is how do we ensure that schools use evidence and systematic inquiry in particular, in ways that constructively acknowledges the issues & strengths of their context and at the same time, can be used to identify critical differences that may potentially impede change efforts to improve teaching & learning, equity and outcomes for students across schools?