‘Carefully framing in-service educator training promotes inclusive teaching strategies’ – Elizabeth Hooijer

At the 2018 World Education Research Association congress in Cape Town, Elizabeth Hooijer presented her work on professional in-service teacher training programmes to promote curriculum differentiation for inclusive education.

As education systems evolve and policies adapt, new directions for more effective in-service educator training are required. Educators play an essential role in successful educational change and in-service training programmes remain paramount as a means to inform educators of current thinking and to improve teaching practice in line with policy changes. With the introduction of inclusive education in South Africa numerous training programmes for in-service educators to implement inclusive classroom practices have been conducted. However nearly two decades after the implementation of inclusive education many educators still report that they are ill-equipped to meet the demands of teaching inclusively despite having attended in-service training programmes. This perception that educators hold remains one of the main barriers to implementing inclusive teaching strategies. Effective in-service training programmes need to disavow this belief and affirm educators that they already are teaching inclusively and possess much knowledge required to teach inclusively. This paper described Conole’s seven Cs framework of learning design as a model for short term in-service professional educator development programmes. This learning design was used successfully in the training of in-service educators in four South African provinces. Using this framework the facilitators conceptualised and modeled effective classroom strategies which educators could take directly back to their classrooms in order to teach more inclusively.