Teachers Need More Preparation to Work in Inclusive Classrooms
June 6, 2019
By: Amelia Harper
Source: Education Dive
Only 17% of general education teachers feel “very well prepared” to teach children with mild to moderate learning disabilities, and only 30% “feel strongly” about their preparedness to teach them, according to a recent report released by Understood and the National Center for Learning Disabilities. More than 60% feel they are “somewhat prepared” to teach them, however, The 74 reports.
Across the nation, about one in five public school students has learning or attention issues, but not all of them receive special education services, the report noted. The issue is of importance because most students with such learning disabilities spend most of their time in the traditional classroom and most perform below grade level, in part because roughly half of teachers surveyed “feel strongly” that it is possible for these students to perform at grade level.
Most teachers want to be better prepared, but only seven states currently require future general education teachers to take coursework focusing on students with disabilities, and much of this instruction does not prepare them for the realities of the classroom. Many teachers also have misconceptions about the source of learning disabilities and low expectations for student success. They require more professional development to help them work with these students with better understanding, the article says.