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The work lives of disabled teachers: revisiting inclusive education in English schools

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Globally there is a focus on ensuring a more diverse teaching workforce ensuring representation across gender, sexual orientation, race and ethnicity. However, little attention is paid to ensuring the inclusion of disabled teachers. This paper examines the work lives of ten disabled teachers in schools across England. Their experiences suggest that whilst there is a strong discourse on inclusive education within English schools and policies this does not necessarily extend to disabled teachers themselves. Whilst the disabled teachers participating in this research demonstrated ways in which their presence disrupted normative notions of able-bodiedness in education and they actively created spaces for inclusive learning, the majority also reported facing significant discrimination and barriers whilst at work. Urgent change is needed to support disabled teachers to access effective training as well as the removal of barriers to enable disabled teachers to remain in the workforce and progress their careers.



Disabled teachers, England, inclusive education, mainstream schools

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Disability and Society

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Informa UK Limited


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