Research into the professional development of teachers for students with disabilities

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We conducted 11 focus groups via Skype with 60 participants in total comprising early career teachers, teachers with postgraduate qualifications in special/inclusive education, school principals, school services staff and external stakeholders, across metropolitan, regional and remote areas of NSW.

Staff views were sought regarding the preparedness of early career teachers to support students with disability and additional needs, the perceived level of knowledge and skills required for pre-service teachers to meet the needs of these students, and any improvements that should be made to initial teacher education programs and practicum experiences for pre-service teachers in relation to working with students with disability.

Participants revealed limitations such as inadequate tertiary training and professional development for early career teachers and solutions including more hands-on training and practicum experiences for pre-service teachers concerning students with disability.