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International Practices in Special Education

Debates and Challenges

Margret A. Winzer and Kas Mazurek, Editors

Publication Year: 2011

Margret A. Winzer and Kas Mazurek combine two disciplines in this collection, comparative and international studies and special education, to explore the ways that diverse nations respond to persons who are exceptional. Their learned contributors also explore the changing parameters of special education, employing comparative studies theories and methods to document, explore, discuss, and analyze social and educational inclusion. International Practices in Special Education: Debates and Challenges travels the world to examine the progress of special education, from inclusive reform in Canada, “education for all” in the United Kingdom, the reform-restructure-renew movement in Poland to the journey from awareness to action in the United States. Chapters describe the challenges and opportunities in the United Arab Emirates; conflicts regarding educational welfare in South Korea; new perspectives on special needs and inclusive education in Japan; facing inclusion in India; making the invisibles visible in Pakistan; problems and prospects in Nigeria; special needs education in Ethiopia; and the developments, prospects, and demands of special education in a rising China. “One step forward, two steps backward” describes Israel’s special education issues. Germany’s special education receives an international perspective; and education policy and pedagogy for students with disabilities in Australia, completes the analyses in this remarkable, comprehensive work of scholarship.

Published by: Gallaudet University Press

Title Page, Copyright

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pp. v-viii

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Introduction: A Comparative Perspective on Special Education

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pp. 1-18

Over the past 3 decades, the concepts and practices of special education, and in particular inclusive schooling, have assumed the momentum of a general globalized phenomenon. The ideas have so piqued the interest of educators, legislators, and parents that inclusive schooling is now placed firmly on the social change agenda and has become an...

Part One: North America—Convictions, Successes, and Challenges

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1. A Journey from Awareness and Advocacy to Action: Special Education in the United States

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pp. 21-43

The United States of America, a federal constitutional republic of 50 states and 1 federal district, is one of the world’s most diverse and multicultural nations. Originally inhabited by native peoples, including Native Americans and Hawaiians, the United States has experienced large influxes of immigrants, earlier from European countries and...

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2. Celebrating the Challenges: Tracking the Inclusive Reform in Canada

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pp. 44-64

Canada, the third largest country in the world, sprawls across more than 9 million square kilometers between the Atlantic, Pacifi c, and Arctic Oceans. The nation is a federation of 10 provinces and 3 territories: British Columbia, Alberta, and Manitoba comprise Western Canada; Central Canada consists of Ontario and Quebec; the Atlantic provinces...

Part Two: Europe—Reforming and Restructuring National Systems

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3. “Education for All” in the Countries of the United Kingdom

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pp. 67-86

Education for All (EFA) refers to the global commitment to provide quality basic education to all children, youth, and adults. While it is usually associated with access to education in the poorest countries of the world, there is a growing appreciation that issues of access, equity, and quality education are important matters for all countries, rich and...

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4. Reform, Restructure, and Renew: Special Education in Poland

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pp. 87-102

Poland is a relatively large nation situated in the center of the European continent. It covers 312,679 square kilometres. The country is divided into 16 provinces (voivodships), 379 districts (powiaty), and 2,478 local government communes (gminy). In the year 2009, Poland had a population of 38,167,329. The number of people living in urban areas...

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5. Special Education from an International Perspective: The Case of Germany

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pp. 103-122

Germany is a federal state in Central Europe. It has a population of about 80 million people living in an area covering 357,112 square kilometers. The population density is one of the highest in the world. Despite some encouraging figures in January 2010, demographic fi gures show a serious decline: The most recent fertility rate (the average...

Part Three: Africa—Aspirations and Challenges

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6. Special Needs Education in Ethiopia

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pp. 125-137

Ethiopia is situated in east Africa, between latitudes 3 to 18 degrees north and longitudes 33 to 48 degrees east. It covers an area of approximately 1,140,000 square kilometers— roughly the size of France and Spain combined. Ethiopia is bordered by Somalia on the east, Kenya on the south, Eritrea on the north, Sudan from northwest to west, and Djibouti...

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7. Special Education Contexts, Problems, and Prospects in Nigeria

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pp. 138-148

Demographically, Nigeria is the most populous nation in Africa today. The country occupies about 923,768 square kilometers (365,700 square miles), which is roughly the size of California, Nevada, and Arizona put together. The population is the 10th largest in the world (Bureau of African Affairs, 2005)...

Part Four: The Middle East—Innovations and Opportunities

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8. One Step Forward, Two Steps Backward: Special Education in Israel

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pp. 151-170

The Israeli education system in general and the special education system in particular face enormous challenges. Israel is a highly complex society, fractured into different sectors where each sector unabashedly pushes its own agenda and tries to dictate government policy. Israel is also an immigrant country with a large indigenous population...

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9. Opportunities and Challenges for Improving Special Education in the United Arab Emirates

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pp. 171-190

This chapter provides an overview of special education and related programs and services in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The framework the authors employ is adopted from the UAE Ministry of Education document School for All: General Rules for the Provision of Special Education Programs and Services (Public & Private Schools; United Arab Emirates

Part Five: South Asia—Diversity, Progress, and Challenges

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10. Facing the Challenge of Inclusion in India

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pp. 193-216

“Come to India! One billion people can’t be wrong,” reads a popular tourism slogan, which, like many witticisms, hides an ineluctable truth. For many, the first image of India is of a teeming population, second only to that of China’s—and they would not be far wrong. India is the seventh largest country in the world. In an area roughly one-third the...

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11. Making the Invisibles Visible: Special Education in Pakistan

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pp. 217-238

Pakistan came into existence on August 14, 1947, after a struggle for independence from British rule led by Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. The two Muslim majority wings in the eastern and northwestern regions of the Indo-Pak subcontinent are made up of East Pakistan and West Pakistan, separated by 1,600 kilometers of Indian territory and...

Part Six The Pacific Rim—Changing Paradigms and New Approaches

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12. Special Education in Rising China: Its Developments, Prospects, and Challenges in the Early 21st Century

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pp. 241-263

Since the late 20th century, the rights and education of persons with disabilities have been important international concerns, particularly in the international human rights movement and the Education for All Movement (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization [UNESCO], 2010; United Nations, 2006). These movements...

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13. Special Education in South Korea: Overcoming Conflicts for the Realization of Educational Welfare

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pp. 264-279

Korea is a peninsula extending south from the northeast Asian mainland. This peninsula is divided into two parts. One part is communist North Korea; the other is South Korea, which is a democracy and has a market economy. South Korea was home to around 48.2 million people as of July 1, 2010. Seoul, the capital city, has a population of around 10.4 million. South Korea’s population density is 483 persons per 1 square kilometer, one...

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14. Current Developments in Education Policy for Students With Disabilities in Australia

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pp. 280-294

Washed by the Pacific and Indian oceans, Australia has 34,218 kilometers of coastline and a landmass of 7,617,930 square kilometers. The nation is a federation of six states— Victoria, South Australia, New South Wales (NSW), Queensland, Tasmania, and Western Australia—and two territories—the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) and the Northern Territory...

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15. New Perspectives on Special Needs and Inclusive Education in Japan

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pp. 295-308

Japan is an arc-shaped archipelago off the east coast of Asia. The country consists of four main islands—Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu—and many small islands. The total land area of Japan is almost the same as Italy. Nearly 70% of the land is mountains and forests. Most of Japan has a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. Japan is...


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pp. 309-314


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pp. 315-320

E-ISBN-13: 9781563685132
E-ISBN-10: 1563685132
Print-ISBN-13: 9781563685095
Print-ISBN-10: 1563685094

Page Count: 216
Illustrations: 30 figures
Publication Year: 2011