DH O9 I want to know more about ensuring inclusion

Ensuring inclusion

Inclusivity is another desirable feature of procedures introducing new content into schools. While on the one hand there needs to be clarity regarding who can initiate them (so as not to create confusion), on the other they should involve as wide a catalogue of actors as possible. The main benefits to be gained from involving more actors are the legitimacy and effectiveness of the changes implemented.

When more actors participate in the process, there is a growing sense among them that they share responsibility for the planned changes. In a collaborative process, the shape of the content and forms to be introduced into the school can be refined in dialogue between the actors. In this way, different perspectives and interests can be taken into account. What’s more, the extra work inevitably involved in introducing something new to schools is shared among more people. The actor initiating the procedure does not feel like a lonely island, but rather part of a supportive school community. All this reinforces the legitimacy of the changes being made.

Wider legitimacy translates into increased effectiveness of the solutions introduced. Even if individual actors are not involved in the process of introducing new content into schools, they will still ultimately be affected. They may then perceive it as being imposed on them by someone else and may resist because of this. Meanwhile, if they are involved from the very beginning, their resistance to collaborative solutions is usually much lower, and they are more willing to become involved. In this way, the effectiveness of new changes is increased and the cost of implementing them is lower (because it does not include overcoming resistance from other actors).

Unfortunately, among the procedures we analysed, it was difficult to find those involving teachers, students, parents and the local community – business, the third sector, etc. – in a far-reaching and systemic way. This most often involves leaving a role to existing structures involving individual actors, which may be dysfunctional. Developing more inclusive procedures is essential for a more innovative governance that provides the possibility of effectively introducing new content in schools.

Materials to use:

The Most Effective Way to Eliminate Barriers to Student Learning