The Responsibilisation of Teachers: Defining and Reporting on “Educational Adjustments” for Students with a Disability

Thursday, 19 July 2018: 08:30
Oral Presentation
Jeanine GALLAGHER, Queensland University of Technology, Australia
Nerida SPINA, Queensland University of Technology, Australia
In Australia, a new system of collecting data on school-aged students with disability is currently being rolled out. The Nationally Consistent Collection of Data on Students with Disability (NCCD) establishes a mandatory data collection process in which teachers are required to categorise and report on individual students’ level of educational support needs in the classroom. The NCCD will facilitate funding for students with disability, with the stated policy goal being to facilitate student access to, and participation in the curriculum and schooling. We argue that this policy can be seen as part of a growing shift towards the responsibilisation of teachers. In this case, teachers are positioned as personally responsible not only for assessing student needs, but also for reporting on their own practice. Yet, while teachers are tasked with this responsibility as part of their everyday work, the undefined nature of “educational adjustments” means it is difficult for educators to understand their reporting responsibilities, even though they are made personally responsible for defining their responsibility with the NCCD as a ruling text. This paper reports on an institutional ethnography that is seeking to reveal how this policy is being experienced by teachers. A key aim of the research is to find out how the responsibilisation of teachers is hooked up with the coordination of teachers’ work via textually coordinated ruling relations.