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Title: Nurture groups for pupils with SEBD : inclusion or exclusion?
Authors: Fenech, Lara (2012)
Keywords: Education, Primary -- Malta
Problem children -- Education -- Malta
Children with social disabilities -- Education -- Malta
Group work in education -- Malta
Issue Date: 2012
Abstract: Recently nurture groups have been introduced in a number of primary schools in Malta as a provision for young pupils with social, emotional and behaviour difficulties. One of the issues surrounding this provision is to what extent they fit within our inclusive educational system. This study sought to explore school staff's perception on nurture groups in the light of inclusive education. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with a number of staff members of two schools in different areas of Malta, including both nurture group and mainstream staff. The results suggest that nurture groups are seen as operating working within an inclusive setting, as children only attend the nurture group on part-time bases. While they are in the nurture group they are developing emotional literacy skills which in turn help them to interact better with their peers and be part of the mainstream class. The data collected also shows that part of the success of nurture groups as an inclusive provision is the involvement of mainstream teachers in the nurture group, together with a good channel of communication between the nurture group staff and the mainstream teachers. The teachers commented that even though they are aware of what is going one and are involved in the nurture groups, they wished they had more time to take an active role. Findings in this research have also proved that the nurture group within the school has had a ripple effect and has evolved the school into a more nurturing one. The nurture group teacher helps the mainstream teacher develop strategies and techniques to better cater for the pupils. In both schools researched, the role of the nurture group teacher moved beyond the nurture group and is working to make the school more nurturing and as resource parents ca Based on the data collected, it is recommended that the paths of communication between various stakeholders continue to improve to ensure continuity and smooth transition. It is also recommended that the mainstream class teachers are provided with more in class support, and that every teacher should have a teaching assistant in class, to help dedicate more individual attention to the pupils. The number of pupils in the classes should be reduced so that each class will become a nurturing class. In the schools researched, parental involvement seemed to be very minimal. It is important to understand what is causing such barriers and to find a way to overcome them and bring the parents on board as active members in their child's education. The role of the nurture group teacher is a very important one, and to ensure success it is of extreme importance that each nurture group teacher is trained, and embraces the necessary skills to work with these children.
Description: M.ED.
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacEdu - 2012

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