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E. Šmelová, L. Ludíková, E. Souralová

Palacký University in Olomouc (CZECH REPUBLIC)
The quality of cooperation between the family and the school is directly associated with increased effectiveness in the area of education. As far as inclusive education is concerned, a necessary aspect is an open dialogue with the parents as partners of the school. The parental community should be adequately informed by the school about the objectives of education, counselling services, but also about the content of individual educational plans, etc. The school should optimize the conditions for the participation of parents in school projects, participate in the discussion about individual school activities in the area of education and provide parents with necessary information. Regarding the topicality of inclusive education and taking into account the different opinions about the usefulness of inclusion presented not only by professionals but also by parents, we believe that cooperation between the school and the family is a significant aspect of successful education. In such case, a positive approach of the parents is of a crucial importance.

The research study, which was performed by a team of experts from the Faculty of Education, Palacký University in Olomouc, Czech Republic and supported by the research centre of the Faculty, presents an international investigation in order to identify the degree of parents’ awareness about inclusive education. Another objective was to compare, analyse and evaluate parents’ opinions about inclusion of pupils with special educational needs into mainstream education.

The research was carried out in cooperation with foreign universities (Slovakia, Slovenia, Poland). These countries are close to the Czech Republic not only in terms of their educational systems, but also in the area of inclusive education, and have various degrees of experience. With respect to the forthcoming national concepts of education in European countries, we thought it would be appropriate to confront the current situation in these countries and to get some inspiration.

The paper presents the parents’ opinions in the mentioned countries about inclusive education and reflects their current awareness in this area. The data compared in the research study represent a stimulus for the cooperation between the school and the family in the context of appropriate conditions for inclusive education in the Czech Republic.