Principal’s stress: tensions between the requirements of the disability discrimination legislation and the governance of inclusion in schools

Keeffe, Mary (2004) Principal’s stress: tensions between the requirements of the disability discrimination legislation and the governance of inclusion in schools. In AARE Annual Conference, 28th November - 2nd December, Melbourne, Australia.

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This paper examines qualitative perspectives that principals in schools have of the disability discrimination legislation. Perspectives from in-depth interviews with six school principals and two focus groups of twenty-eight principals describe attitudes toward the disability discrimination legislation, particularly as these attitudes relate to the governance of inclusion. The study found that a reduced level of knowledge of the disability discrimination legislation and vague, ineffectual inclusive education policies contributed to leadership problems in the governance of inclusion. A combination of such factors increased stressful, reactive decision-making responses from principals particularly when complex school situations related to students with disabilities and challenging behaviours. The study proposed that collaborative decision-making to create shared understandings about disability issues was more effective in creating inclusive school cultures than the imposed requirements of the disability discrimination legislation.

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ID Code: 973
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: No
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Educational leadership, governance, inclusion, legislation, disability
ISSN: 1324-9339
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2004 (please consult author)
Deposited On: 07 Apr 2005 00:00
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2010 12:24

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