Inclusion, schools and anti-discrimination law : parents' experiences and inclusion

Smith, Liam Hartley (2012) Inclusion, schools and anti-discrimination law : parents' experiences and inclusion. Professional Doctorate thesis, Queensland University of Technology.


With the increasing enrolment of students with disabilities in primary schools and the enactment of legislative protections for students with disabilities in Disability Discrimination legislation and the Disability Standards for Education, this study examines the experiences of parents of students with disabilities in Queensland State schools.

This study is concerned with the experiences that parents of children with disabilities have in relation to the concept and processes of inclusive classroom practice within the primary school. The experiences of parents in large metropolitan schools in Queensland, Australia are analysed in light of current anti-discrimination legislation operating within Australia.

Data were collected using a mixed methodology in which 50 parents from nine large metropolitan Queensland State schools responded to a Parent Questionnaire about their experiences in their child’s school. This was followed by two focus groups with a total of six parents who described their experiences in their child’s school. Together the qualitative and quantitative information complemented the other to provide a unique perspective on the impact of anti-discrimination legislation.

The findings from the study suggest that parents and their children continue to be discriminated against and that the legislation and associated standards have not eliminated this discrimination. Recommendations are made in the final chapter that propose an inclusive schooling framework for students with disabilities. This intends to ensure not only compliance with the ‘spirit’ of Anti-Discrimination legislation and the Disability Standards, but also a means by which schools may evolve to become inclusive and embracing of difference as part of overall richness of schools as opposed to deficiency.

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ID Code: 61865
Item Type: QUT Thesis (Professional Doctorate)
Supervisor: Carrington, Suzanne & Spooner-Lane, Rebecca
Keywords: schools, anti-discrimination law, parents' experiences
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Institution: Queensland University of Technology
Deposited On: 16 Aug 2013 03:11
Last Modified: 04 Sep 2015 02:50

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