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Title: Institutional ableism and the politics of inclusive education : an ethnographic study of an inclusive high school
Author: Beratan, Gregg D.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2735 9427
Awarding Body: Institute of Education, University of London
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2012
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This thesis explores some of the ways inequalities are maintained and legitimated within the context of reforms that are focused on them. In particular, it looks at the continued marginalization of disabled students in U.S. public Schools. Central to this is the development of the concept of institutional ableism, the idea that there are discriminatory structures and practices and uninterrogated beliefs embedded within society that subvert even the most well intentioned policies. This thesis is an attempt to examine this oppression on both the macro and micro-political levels. Chapter three looks at how institutional ablism works at a policy level. Using a detailed deconstruction of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement act 2004 (IDEA), the first chapter examines the ways in which institutional ableism subverts the stated intentions of IDEA to maintain disabled peoples marginalised status within the education system. The chapter further deconstructs IDEA, focusing on its attempts to address the disproportionate representation of minority students in special education. The Final three chapters look at the micro-politics of school level reforms. Based on a year long ethnography in an inclusive school in the western United States. Chapter four focuses on the relationship between teachers and disabled students examining the mechanisms used to maintain inequalities when traditional ableism has been made inaccessible. Chapter five focuses on peer relationships. It was found that in filling a gatekeepers role nondisabled students utilise the governance of friendship to preserve and regulate the hierarchical relationship between disabled and nondisabled students. Chapter six using case studies of several students looks at the school's disabled students' experience of the school, their teachers and their peers. It is clear from these cases that even with the extensive efforts to dictate and control the positioning within the school, disabled students are still able to create spaces for resistance.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available