About this book
As societies become more diverse, so too must they become more inclusive. In inclusive societies, all members, regardless of their ethnicity, religion, socio-economic status, ability or disability are valued and free to participate, and there is equity of access and reward. Schools have a powerful role to play in creating inclusive societies, and this begins with the notion of inclusive schools - schools were all children belong, where all children have a place, and where difference is a natural part of what it is to be a human being. Based on this understanding, many countries around the world are moving towards more inclusive education systems. However, working against inclusive education are forces of exclusion – factors that act to exclude and marginalize minority students from participation and learning at school. Therefore, in order to progress the principles and practices of inclusive education, an examination of the construct of exclusion is critical. Important questions to be interrogated if inclusive education is to be a reality are: What is exclusion? Why does it occur? How can it be reduced and eliminated? This book critically examines the construct of exclusion, exploring how disabled students experience exclusion both from and within school and suggesting reasons why this occurs. Finally, key foci for change are proposed as platforms for interrogating, reducing and eliminating the forces of exclusion.