Teaching Secondary School Pupils with Language Impairment: Views and Experiences of Mainstream Secondary School Teachers in Wales
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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A trend towards inclusive education for pupils with special educational needs has seen an increase in the numbers of children with speech, language and communication difficulties (SLCD) in mainstream education. This study reports on findings from a focus group which invited teaching staff from a mainstream secondary school to discuss their experiences of teaching pupils with SLCD. Specific support material published by the children’s language charity Afasic was used as a discussion stimulus. The research identified that pupils with SLCD clearly formed part of a potentially complex classroom demographic in the inclusive secondary education environment. Staff had little if any training related to pupils with SLCD, and although participants could rely on experience and a mixture of strategies, their efforts were hampered by a lack of speech and language therapy input. Further barriers to provision included such issues as limits to funding, staffing, training and time, along with timetabling trends. Needs identified by staff included practical and succinct information about SLCD, and concise support suggestions. The school’s overall provision for pupils with SLCD did not mirror the consultative approach reported in the literature, and suggestions for further research are discussed.
B.Sc. (Hons) Speech and Language Therapy
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