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Inclusive Education in Wales: Interpreting Discourses of Values and Practice Using Critical Policy Analysis
ECNU Review of Education, Volume: 5, Issue: 2, Pages: 258 - 283
Swansea University Authors: Cathryn Knight , Tom Crick
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DOI (Published version): 10.1177/20965311211039858
Purpose: This paper provides a detailed analysis of inclusive education policies in the context of major system reform in Wales, UK. Wales is currently undergoing the most significant changes to its education system since political devolution from the UK Government in 1999. Key to these changes is t...
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Purpose: This paper provides a detailed analysis of inclusive education policies in the context of major system reform in Wales, UK. Wales is currently undergoing the most significant changes to its education system since political devolution from the UK Government in 1999. Key to these changes is the new Curriculum for Wales and the Additional Learning Needs (ALN) regulations; alongside these and wider system-level reforms there is ambition to create an inclusive education system in Wales. This paper explores how inclusion is articulated and communicated within the key policy and guidance documents, using two continuums — ‘practice’ and ‘values’ — to map and interpret these documents.Methods: This paper uses critical policy analysis to make sense of these various inclusive education policy reforms in Wales.Findings: The analysis reveals that despite a foregrounded commitment to inclusion there is disparity both within and between the policy and guidance documents.Originality/Value: The paper highlights the lack of coherence of key messages articulated through education policy documentation in Wales, providing insight into the emerging national education system reforms, as well as developing an approach for evaluating inclusive education systems in other jurisdictions.
additional learning needs, critical policy analysis, curriculum reform, inclusion, special educational needs, Wales
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
The authors received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.