According to the fundamental belief that education must be available, accessible, affordable, acceptable and adaptable for all people (Human Right and Equal Opportunity, 2000), inclusive education is developed in many countries. Inclusive education means that schools should accommodate all children regardless of their physical, intellectual, social, emotional, linguistic or other conditions (UNESCO, 1994).
In Indonesia, the concept of inclusive education is relatively new. The pilot project for inclusive school implementation was started in 1986, and up to now the development of this inclusive practice is still challenging. Some reasons emerge such as: (1) the benefits of inclusion have not been clearly communicated to all school components and stakeholders; (2) schools’ lacking of resources and supports as well as inappropriate allocation for available supports; (3) less commitment staff with little understanding and knowledge regarding to inclusive practices; (4) ineffective and unsupportive leadership.
In order to help schools to increase the quality of inclusive education, in 2011, The Centre for Inclusion of The Faculty of Psychology, Airlangga University organized basic trainings on inclusive education in two senior high schools in Surabaya. From the descriptions of training resulted in two different schools, there are some critical points highlighted in this paper:
- As training should be conducted in carefully planning and implementation, this training provided good example of need analysis prior the training in order to define the schools’ needs based on specific characteristics of the schools. The materials provided in training sessions were developed from analysis of focus group discussion results within two schools. Therefore each school would receive different training materials, and thus meeting the specific needs of the schools.
- There should be different stressing in materials given for general schools with mostly theoretical subjects taught for students and for vocational schools with more practical subjects taught. Generally, schools with more theoretical subjects such as science and mathematics will face more challenging tasks in teaching students with disability in comparison with vocational schools. These characteristics of school should be an important consideration for further training programs.
- A technical problem regarding to training schedule and time emerged in both schools which influence on teachers’ commitment to fully attend in every training activity. Although such technical problem could be considered as small issue, managing time and schedule for training carefully would give better result in increasing teachers’ commitment in attending the training.
This paper is part of The Advocacy Program of Inclusive Schools conducted by The Center for Inclusion, The Faculty of Psychology, Airlangga University, Surabaya – Indonesia. This Program was funded by The Directorate of Special Education and Special Service for Secondary Education, The Ministry of Education and Culture in Indonesia.
(Catt: Tulisan Disusun Bersama Rekan a.n. Aryani Tri Wrastari; Dipresentasikan dalam International Conference on Current Issues in Education, UNY, 2012)