Preparing Educational Leaders for 21st Century Inclusive School Communities: Transforming University Preparation Programs
AbstractUniversity educational leadership preparation programs whose mission is to prepare Transitional Kindergarten through 12th grade (TK-12) school administrators need to transform their curriculum so that all leaders (not just special education leaders) have the knowledge and skills to create inclusive school communities that truly include all students. Evidence suggests that even though there are policies, laws, recommendations and an empirical base that supports inclusive education for students with disabilities, equity, achievement and opportunity gaps remain in our nation’s public schools. The purpose of this conceptual study is to provide a look at redesigned preparation programs built on professional standards changes, evidencebased practices, and practice-based evidence correlated with inclusive school communities. Transformed preparation programs prepare educational leaders who lead inclusive school communities in closing the gaps for students with disabilities, considering that 100% of the students spend 80% or more of their day in general education classrooms. The impact for students with disabilities is that they experience equity, social justice and their civil rights for education in inclusive school communities where all benefit.