As a result of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the school systems of Germany’s federal states are required to develop and implement programs of inclusive education. At the same time, the structural improvement of educational participation has emerged as an urgent social task, which does not merely demand political action or that of institutions of teacher education, but impacts school management and teachers (actors which can influence students’ individual development) as well.
Due to the heavy societal significance placed on education and the public debate about the opportunities and difficulties of inclusion, a critical-reflexive discussion of the central questions raised by the implementation of inclusion programs in general and vocational high schools (Gymnasien) as well as community schools has become more important than ever. For this purpose, the series “New Topics INCLUSION” offers a platform for informational exchange between scientists, teachers, professionals in the network of teacher education, representatives of school administration as well as other interested individuals.
The first „New Topics INCLUSION“ workshop series was conducted in the Winter Term 2017/18. A description of the session’s most important events can be found in our report on the series of events. Additionally, further information can be found on the individual workshops’ websites:
In the workshop “Diversity and Inclusion in the Context of High School (Gymnasial) Education: Challenges and Perspectives,” levels of school development were taken into account. Strategies for effective inclusion in high schools as well as opportunities for concessions for students with disabilities were introduced.
The workshop „Inclusion and Linguistic Heterogeneity: An Issue for Training of High School Teachers?” covered current trends in handling linguistic heterogeneity in the classroom. Topics included the effects of the VKL system on lateral entry employees and the potential for inclusion that the recognition of multilingualism as a skill could unlock.
While the first two events were aimed towards the scholastic field, the third workshop, “Inclusion: A Research Topic in Pedagogical Content Knowledge?” allowed for the internal exchange between educational science and pedagogical content knowledge, in order to discuss perspectives of research and development. Suggestions for the interdisciplinary discussion delivered an input to the central research questions related to inclusive teaching as well as a critical outline of current approaches in qualitative research on inclusion.
The event series was supported by the BMBF-Quality Offensive: Teacher Education and makes an encompassing contribution to the improvement of teacher education via the critical-reflexive connection of research and practice.