A Quality Education for All. A History of the Lao PDR Inclusive Education Project 1993-2009

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This publication details the challenges and lessons learned from 16 years of the Laos PDR inclusive education project. Pre-Service and In-Service training are key areas which need to be strategically developed in order to ensure that all students with disabilities are enabled to participate and achieve in school. Of fundamental importance is the structure of pre-service training. As long as Inclusive Education training is provided as a discreet module, student teachers will find it difficult to understand that Quality Education means the education of all students.

Inclusive values and teaching strategies need to be embedded across the complete pre-service curriculum in order to support student teachers in developing their understanding of the ways in which learner centred classrooms can be created. In effective IE schools the teachers, parents and community have worked closely together to develop innovative approaches to supporting learning out of school. When teaching assistants are used effectively: directed by the teacher and given appropriate support and training, the role can have a significant and positive impact on the achievement of all pupils in the classroom, as well as those with more complex needs.

Recommendations for assessment include developing summative as well as formative forms of assessment that involve: in-class assessment strategies which will demonstrate children’s progress based upon their starting points or clear base-line achievement data; and the development of teachers’ capacity to carry out a range of assessments which can feed into the planning of lessons designed to meet children’s specific learning needs.

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