This paper will analyze the challenges for inclusive education in China. A report on inclusive education published by UNESCO describes inclusive education as necessary to overcome exclusion and marginalization in society. Children with diverse backgrounds and learning difficulties study in regular mainstream schools…
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Poor human resource management in the form of teachers lacking necessary qualifications and motivation and absence of required teamwork all contribute to halfhearted attempts at inclusive education. Administrative Challenges Malinen (2013) shows some interesting trends with regard to inclusive education in China. For instance, Malinen (2013, p. 6) reveals that almost 60% of Chinese children with disabilities already study in mainstream schools. However, this optimistic figure is based on a disability assessment system that is based on functional disability such as visual, hearing, language, intellectual, physical and mental disability. On the other hand, the WHO categorizes disabilities along cognition, mobility, self-care, getting along, life activities, and participation domains. Thus, the performance of inclusive education in China appears deceptively positive. Some legal and social challenges include the difficulty of children of economic migrants to large cities getting admitted to schools in the cities. The large classroom sizes, rote learning and an assessment system based on competition rather than teamwork also make it difficult to implement inclusive education. Malinen (2013) also notes that teachers spend little time in planning lessons for inclusive classrooms. The UNESCO (2003) report also reflects similar views such as the inadequacy of the curriculum to meet the diverse learning needs of inclusive classrooms. Inclusive schools are often inaccessible to scattered populations which also pose a strong challenge. Chen (n.a.) also notes the problem of large classrooms for inclusive teaching to take place. The dearth of effective teaching aids further complicates the situation for teachers, who are inadequately trained at times. Poor school management...
This paper approves that a conceptual paper on inclusive education by UNESCO validates the findings of Zhu and Wang by identifying some of the same barriers to inclusive education. The report highlights the challenge posed by socio-economic factors such as inadequate educational facilities and inequalities bred into the educational system. Poor human resource management in the form of teachers lacking necessary qualifications and motivation and absence of required teamwork all contribute to halfhearted attempts at inclusive education.
This paper makes a conclusion that the main challenges to inclusive education in China are administrative and cultural. School administrations are struggling to equip inclusive schools with well-trained teachers while parents of children with special learning needs need to appreciate the importance of inclusive education. Resources need to be invested in teacher training, curriculum development and making inclusive schools accessible to the target populations. The current curriculum and teaching methodologies are inadequate for meeting the learning needs of students. The Chinese government seems to be making inclusive education a major priority; however, cooperation from local governments is also essential for these efforts to be effective. Moreover, once general consciousness that inclusive education is beneficial for the whole society is raised, the prospects for inclusive education in China are likely to become much brighter.
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