This website provides some case studies that can be used as a source of research for other educational projects committed to inclusive education. Therefore, these case studies cannot be seen as a ready-made recipe that can be used at all times with the same results.
  • The Case of the Harvard Graduate School of Education - Cambridge, MA, USA

    Eileen Berger, Assistant Director Office of Student Affairs, Access and Disability Services Administrator, sat at her desk reviewing the paperwork on one of her favorite—and most challenged—students, Martin : a brilliant, thoughtful, quadriplegic Harvard College senior. She thought about how far he had come since he first wandered down the street from the undergraduate campus to the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE). He would be graduating this May, receiving his diploma by special permission from the Education school rather than Harvard College, since the Education school had become his true academic home. Eileen loved looking back at the documentation of his time at HGSE including his sparkling academic report, his leadership in the International Higher Education Disability student group, his service as a Teaching Fellow, and more. Eileen was reminiscing about how Martin had thrived in the HGSE community when there was a knock at the door. She glanced at her full calendar, noting that while the rest of the afternoon was full of back-to-back appointments with administrators, faculty, students, and outside contractors, she happened to have rare half hour of free time. “Come in!” she said, and in walked a student she had never seen before.
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    Resumed version of the documentary about the case study: "The Case of the Harvard Graduate School of Education - Cambridge, MA, USA".

  • Coronel Pilar State School - Santa Maria, Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil

    The Coronel Pilar State School has become a point of reference for inclusive education in the city of Santa Maria, Rio Grande do Sul. Its first experience with inclusion dates back to the year of 1993, when it received its first blind student in a mainstream classroom. That was a historical context in which not even the national and international legal framework on inclusion was well deliberated, disseminated or consolidated. It is a school that timely recognized the social importance and accepted the pedagogical challenge of having more plural classrooms when these practices were nothing but incipient and experimental in Brazilian education. Led by its principal at that time, Paulo, the school faced the resistance and distrust of an educational culture that saw the separation of students with and without disability as a natural phenomenon. The change was surely not overnight. Renata Basso, a student with Down syndrome, has just finished the high school at the Coronel Pilar School. Her experience was rich and singular, as it happens with every case of inclusion. Two special aspects of her case call the attention: on the one hand, the protagonism of her family with regards to the school activities; on the other, the solutions tested by the school to meet her particular needs in the context of the high school.
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    Resumed version of the documentary about the case study: "Coronel Pilar State School - Santa Maria, Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil".

  • The Case of the Clarisse Fecury School - Rio Branco, Acre, Brazil

    The Clarisse Fecury School has managed to develop a teaching model which intimately dialogues with the inclusive education concept adopted by the Brazilian Ministry of Education. This model prescribes that students with disabilities, students with pervasive developmental disorder as well as gifted students should all attend regular classrooms and receive specialized services when not at school, so they may enjoy the benefits of socializing with other students. At school, the commitment to accommodating differences starts with the pedagogical political project (PPP), unfolds in manager actions, in practice in the classroom and in the student assessment process. The school principal, Iran Saraiva, has a leadership style that allows her to mobilize the community around the school project and establish links with government and civil society organizations. Through partnerships, she is able to offer specialized educational services and clinical support to students. An important characteristic of local public administration is its ongoing investment on teacher training. This work is performed by both state and the municipal bodies. After eight years as manager, Iran now faces the challenges of making transport available to some students, of avoiding staff turnover caused by the pedagogical model of temporary contract, and lead the process of replacing her position, without undermining her achievements on inclusive education implementation.
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    Resumed version of the documentary about the case study: "The Case of the Clarisse Fecury School - Rio Branco, Acre, Brazil".

  • The Case of Alexandre Bacchi School - Guaporé, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

    The teacher Adriangela Bonetti came across a unquiet classroom in early 2009, in which there was one student with disabilities and one with pervasive development disorder. This latter had a "diagnosis" from his previous educators, according to which he could be difficult, agitated and violent. There was no common effort on the school on how to act in the classroom or how to deal with those specificities. Each teacher acted according to his own experience, seeking only to abide by the school code of conduct and discipline, one of the few common values among all educators. The resource room that existed in the school provided after school services for the student, just like the local Association of Parents and Friends of Exceptional Children (APAE) did. However, the first had been intended primarily for bridging the gap between student age and grade, and thus focused its activities on that. And the latter was going through a crisis, caught between the need to diagnosis reports so that the city could get funds from the Ministry of Education, the conflicting demands of both parents of students with disabilities and inclusive schools, as well as the threat of being extinguished due to the new educational scenario. That same year, the Secretary of Education implemented a system of quality management in education, seeking to document in detail the procedures of each school, based on a procedures handbook that should be filled out by the school management team. With public prosecutor office pressing for enforcement of the laws of inclusion, Adriangela was offered the chance to take a course on the subject. There she came into contact with the Individualized Educational Plan (IEP) methodology, which she implemented at the Alexandre Bacchi School where she was employed. The use of IEP was helpful to all the teachers in the school, but it was not the only change the course brought to Adriangela. It also marked a paradigm shift in terms of her perception of students, lesson planning, and the role of evaluation. The teacher took a less "conventional" teaching approach, using task-based lesson plans, short duration activities, flexible assessments and other strategies, in order to be able to teach the same content, but with different teaching techniques. Her effort earned her a national award and an invitation to be the coordinator for inclusive education in her municipality. But this change has brought a series of new challenges for her and her peers at school: How to translate her vision of inclusive education into public policies? How to ensure that students with special educational needs continue participating in the school environment after her departure? How to strengthen sometimes conflicting partnerships with APAE and government officials?
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  • The Case of Amorim Lima School - São Paulo, SP, Brazil

    The Municipal School Amorim Lima has a distinguished management project that prioritizes autonomy and respect for students. As part of their teaching strategies, the school reorganized its curriculum content through research scripts, whose sequence of study is defined by the students themselves. This process is mediated by educators, making use of a "tutor". Such a system facilitates working with heterogeneity in the school. Still, inclusive education proved to be a new issue for the teaching staff. The arrival of Cleiton, a student without a definite diagnosis, put the school in a constant state of anxiety due to his defiant behavior, both in his learning process and in his interactions. The relationship between the school and the student’s parents became increasingly strained, especially when the school decided that Cleiton should repeat the first grade. It was necessary to emphasize one of the principles of the pedagogical project, which prescribes the unconditional acceptance that every child can learn and that their place is, therefore, in the school. On the other hand, the partnership forged by the family and the school staff with a psychologist, assigned to serve the student, allowed for the mediation of the relationship between these three actors and, thus, for the re-inserting of the student and his family into the education institution. Based on this case, one can think about non-traditional models of school management and on the importance of attitudes of teachers facing students with disabilities or pervasive developmental disorders, about the difficulties of relationships with families, as well as on the needs of partnerships for inclusive education.
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    Resumed version of the documentary about the case study: "The Case of Amorim Lima School - São Paulo, SP, Brazil".

  • The case of Henderson School - Boston, MA, USA

    The Henderson Inclusion School became an inclusive school more than two decades ago and nowadays is recognized as a reference in the US. Through the years, the teachers and leaders at the Henderson School have developed a model of inclusive education that has been proven to provide an equal education to students of differing abilities. This case study establishes how teachers at the Henderson School effectively implement inclusive education by outlining the structure of the school, pedagogy and curriculum, use of technology and collaboration among teachers and specialists. Now the school is facing the challenge of how to develop a disciplinary policy that allows students to express themselves in a way that acknowledges their different needs while minimizing disruptive or inappropriate behaviors.
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