Physical Education and Special Educational Needs in North-West England

Maher, Anthony (2010) Physical Education and Special Educational Needs in North-West England. Sport Science Review, XIX (5-6). pp. 263-283. ISSN 2069-7244

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The paper examines the inclusion of pupils with special educational needs (SEN) in mainstream secondary schools from the perspective of physical education (PE) teachers. The findings of this case study, which used individual interviews and was undertaken in the North-West of England, suggest that team games are activities which teachers find particularly difficult to plan and deliver in an inclusive way. Specifically, many teachers suggested that there was limited opportunity for individual planning during team games and that they found it difficult to develop and implement rules and adapt games to make them more inclusive. Moreover, there was an expressed feeling among teachers that, first, their initial teacher traininG (ITT) had not prepared them adequately for their day-to-day endeavours to include pupils with SEN in PE; and, second, that the schools in which they work are not providing them with any inclusion training. Finally, there was a general feeling among PE teachers that they are not receiving enough support from special educational needs coordinators (SENCOs) and learning support assistants (LSAs) whose role is, lest we forget, to enable teachers to include pupils with SEN in the mainstream education system.

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