About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 2895-2901
Publication year: 2018
ISBN: 978-84-09-02709-5
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2018.0768

Conference name: 10th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 2-4 July, 2018
Location: Palma, Spain

SOCIAL NETWORKING THEORY AS A FRAMEWORK FOR ADDRESSING SPECIAL NEEDS IN SOUTH AFRICAN MAINSTREAM SCHOOLS

J. Fourie

University of Johannesburg (SOUTH AFRICA)
Supporting children who require special educational needs in South African schools is increasingly complex as more diverse children are attending mainstream schools. Although establishing an effective team of teachers who can support these children is essential for educational success, such teams are often ineffective in supporting complex special educational needs in ordinary schools. In this case study, the functioning of a teacher support team in a multi-cultural, mainstream, primary school was examined in order to determine how the team supported children with special educational needs who attended this school. Data were collected from an in-depth focus group interview with the 8 team members, field notes taken during team meetings during the year, and documents collected pertaining to the team’s functioning, such as minutes of meetings and referral letters. Thematic content analysis of the data was framed against the constructs of Social Networking Theory. Findings revealed that a well functioning team establishes strong ties with teachers, parents, medical practitioners, social workers, health clinics and other supportive agencies. A strong team leader who actively manages the children’s educational needs, such as curriculum adaptations, individual education plans and assessment accommodations was essential. Liaising with expert educators in adjacent special needs schools was extremely helpful for supporting teachers and pupils with assistive devices such as specialised text-to-speech software. The study concluded that networking between educators and outside agents should be highly valued and occur with many role players in complex, open networks that build the social capital of individual educators in the team. Such well structured networks show greater resilience in meeting diverse learning needs in mainstream schools than sparsely linked networks which draw on limited educational resources.
@InProceedings{FOURIE2018SOC,
author = {Fourie, J.},
title = {SOCIAL NETWORKING THEORY AS A FRAMEWORK FOR ADDRESSING SPECIAL NEEDS IN SOUTH AFRICAN MAINSTREAM SCHOOLS},
series = {10th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN18 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-09-02709-5},
issn = {2340-1117},
doi = {10.21125/edulearn.2018.0768},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/edulearn.2018.0768},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Palma, Spain},
month = {2-4 July, 2018},
year = {2018},
pages = {2895-2901}}
TY - CONF
AU - J. Fourie
TI - SOCIAL NETWORKING THEORY AS A FRAMEWORK FOR ADDRESSING SPECIAL NEEDS IN SOUTH AFRICAN MAINSTREAM SCHOOLS
SN - 978-84-09-02709-5/2340-1117
DO - 10.21125/edulearn.2018.0768
PY - 2018
Y1 - 2-4 July, 2018
CI - Palma, Spain
JO - 10th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN18 Proceedings
SP - 2895
EP - 2901
ER -
J. Fourie (2018) SOCIAL NETWORKING THEORY AS A FRAMEWORK FOR ADDRESSING SPECIAL NEEDS IN SOUTH AFRICAN MAINSTREAM SCHOOLS, EDULEARN18 Proceedings, pp. 2895-2901.
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