The Irregular School: Exclusion, Schooling and Inclusive Education, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Irregular School

Exclusion, Schooling and Inclusive Education, 1st Edition

By Roger Slee


220 pages

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Should disabled students be in regular classrooms all of the time or some of the time? Is the regular school or the special school or both the solution for educating students with a wide range of differences?

Inclusive education has been incorporated in government education policy around the world. Key international organisations such as UNESCO and OECD declare their commitment to Education for All and the principles and practice of inclusive education. There is no doubt that despite this respectability inclusive education is hotly contested and generates intense debate amongst teachers, parents, researchers and policy-makers. People continue to argue over the nature and extent of inclusion.

The Irregular School explores the foundations of the current controversies and argues that continuing to think in terms of the regular school or the special school obstructs progress towards inclusive education. The book contends that we need to build a better understanding of exclusion, of the foundations of the division between special and regular education, and of school reform as a precondition for more inclusive schooling in the future. Schooling ought to be an apprenticeship in democracy and inclusion is a prerequisite of a democratic education.

The Irregular School builds on existing research and literature to argue for a comprehensive understanding of exclusion, a more innovative and aggressive conception of inclusive education and a genuine commitment to school reform that steps aside from the troubled and troubling notions of regular schools and special schools. It will be of interest to all those working and researching in the field of inclusive education.


"This is a valuable work which I believe makes a major and significant contribution to the dialogue on exclusion and inclusion." - NASEN Journal, 2011

Table of Contents

Foreword by Tony Knight Acknowledgments Chapter 1. Approaching Accents Chapter 2. The Worlds We Live In Chapter 3. Unravelling Collective Indifference Chapter 4. Building A Theory Of Inclusive Education Chapter 5. It’s What Governments Do – Policy Inaction Chapter 6. From Segregation To Integration To Inclusion And Back Chapter 7. Building Authority, Dividing Populations And Getting Away With It (Exposing a system of rationality) Chapter 8. Considering Other Possibilities – The Irregular School

About the Author

Roger Slee is Professor of Inclusive Education at the Institute of Education, University of London, UK.

About the Series

Foundations and Futures of Education

Foundations and Futures of Education focuses on key emerging issues in education as well as continuing debates within the field. The series is inter-disciplinary, and includes historical, philosophical, sociological, psychological and comparative perspectives on the purposes and nature of education; increasing interdisciplinarity within the field; and the theory-practice divide.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDUCATION / Special Education / General
EDUCATION / Educational Policy & Reform / General