Question 7: Were the case studies helpful?
Yes/no responses – all respondents
Case studies were included under the Delivering Inclusion section of the guidance and this question sought responses on whether they were helpful.
There was a mixed view on the helpfulness/usefulness of the case studies provided, with a similar proportion responding positively or negatively to them.
Of those that found them helpful (36%), the most common reasons given were that they provided information on what practice existed in other areas of the country and how practice could be implemented in their own area and that it was helpful to have real life examples of how inclusion could work in practice. Those that responded also thought case studies were helpful as a prompt to inform and change practice. Some respondents caveated their responses by highlighting that although they found them useful they had concerns that the current practice within their own area did not match the practice set out within the case studies.
Amongst the third (34%) of respondents who did not find the case studies helpful, comments split between those that commented on current practice and those that commented on the drafting of the case studies themselves.
Those that responded with concerns on practice felt that the case studies did not reflect the reality of practice within their local area or take into account the resource/workload issues that they were experiencing. It was felt that case studies could only provide a snap shot of practice within school and were unconvinced that this could be used to improve practice in other contexts or improve inclusion more generally. There were concerns that the case studies were not detailed enough to be used by others to improve practice.
Some respondents provided more general comments on the case studies. These comments were wide ranging and there were a lot of different views on how the case studies could be improved. Some respondents commented that it would have been helpful to have a wider geographical and school mix. It was felt that a lot of the case studies were from the west coast and it would have been helpful to have examples from other parts of the country and from a larger number of schools with different types of provision (nurseries, primary, and secondary, with bases and without). A few respondents had concerns that the case studies covered only a limited number of needs and at a fairly low level. It was thought that it would have been helpful to cover more complex needs being dealt with in mainstream environments and a wider range of needs.