Special or Inclusive Education in Romania?

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Abstract

In our paper we will try to explore the process of reforming the “special needs education” ideology of the Romanian school system toward the European target called “inclusive education”. Following the method of inquiry named Institutional Ethnography, our study investigated first the everyday dysfunctional experiences of special needs populations approaching the scholar system, and then the institutional response for these dysfunctionalities, the final target being a better understanding and finding solutions to the problematics encountered.

After the dissolution of the communist regime very few disabled students succeeded to be integrated in the general education and these happy cases happened in the prestige schools with dedicated teachers and mainly because of the huge efforts of the parents. The most part of the disabled students had to address the old special schools (much less organized and financed than they used to be) to get vocational training for the special protected units that disappeared in the meantime.

An inclusive school would be fit for an inclusive society but when the labour market and society as a whole is excluding this category, the segregated education seem the proper approach and illustrate the reproductive efforts of the society through the education in the Bourdieu perspective.

In fact the “inclusive education” European model seems still far for Romania. Even the objective is clear the path is still unclear, due the discriminatory resistance of the society. A learning process is needed but the process seems difficult because “students” refuse to learn it and teachers seem very hard to find.

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