Language matters: Developing inclusive, strengths-based practice in an RTLB cluster

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dc.contributor.advisor Walker, J en
dc.contributor.advisor Meyer, F en Harkness, Fiona en 2019-12-10T19:34:21Z en 2019 en
dc.identifier.uri en
dc.description.abstract Resource Teachers: Learning and Behaviour (RTLB) area school-based service comprised of clusters of itinerant, fully-registered teachers working within schools and across Kāhui Ako (Communities of Learning) throughout New Zealand. RTLB are envisaged as agents of change who work with educators to identify learning and behaviour needs for students who are experiencing significant barriers to educational success (Walker, 2013). As teacher consultants, RTLB work in collaboration with school communities to promote and support inclusion (Thomson et al., 2003; Walker, 2013). The way in which educators respond to any situation is significantly dependent on the language used to make meaning of the events and is key to improving educational outcomes for all learners (Mentis & Annan, 2013; Rubie-Davies, 2006; Smith, 2014). In addition, language used has a significant influence on the development of perspectives in any given situation (Bonilla-Silva, 2010; Maynes, Pierce, & Laslett, 2008; Senge, Kleiner, Roberts, Ross, & Smith, 1994; White & Epston, 1990). The aim of this research was to firstly examine the extent to which inclusive, strengths-based language was in use by RTLB in the Initial Meeting phase of the collaborative problem-solving (CPS) process. The Initial Meeting is held with an educator as the first step of RTLB involvement and is initiated as a result of a request for RTLB support in relation to student learning and/or behaviour difficulties. The purpose of an Initial Meeting is to establish a positive working relationship between the RTLB and the educator, clarify the nature of the problem and identify further data-gathering requirements. Secondly, the research examined whether shifts could be made in RTLB language through professional learning and development (PLD). The PLD focused on developing language that was consistent with an inclusive and strengths-based paradigm. It included opportunities for RTLB to reflect on their own practice. The research involved asking RTLB to audio record Initial Meetings prior to and following participation in the professional development sessions. The RTLB were also asked to provide reflections on both Initial Meeting transcripts and respond to a reflective questionnaire after both Initial Meetings. The results indicated that prior to the PLD the RTLB appeared to have difficulty applying relevant knowledge or skills with respect to the use of inclusive, strengths-based language. The results also indicated that RTLB language use at the Initial Meeting was able to be improved through targeted PLD and opportunities to learn, reflect and practise the requisite skills. The evidence shows that through an iterative PLD process RTLB increased awareness, knowledge, and skills with respect to inclusive, strengths-based language. Enacting change is not an easy task. Change can be uncomfortable and often requires disrupting long held understandings and beliefs (Butler, 1996; Schön, 1987). These findings indicate that there is a need for ongoing, focussed PLD for RTLB on the knowledge, language and skills of CPS. Further, the demonstrated effectiveness of the PLD in creating a notable shift in the language used by RTLB has implications for further professional development. en
dc.publisher ResearchSpace@Auckland en
dc.relation.ispartof Masters Thesis - University of Auckland en
dc.relation.isreferencedby UoA99265200412302091 en
dc.rights Items in ResearchSpace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. Previously published items are made available in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. en
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dc.title Language matters: Developing inclusive, strengths-based practice in an RTLB cluster en
dc.type Thesis en Education en The University of Auckland en Masters en
dc.rights.holder Copyright: The author en
dc.rights.accessrights en
pubs.elements-id 788917 en
pubs.record-created-at-source-date 2019-12-11 en

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