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Title: Special educational needs, disability and school accountability: an international perspective
Authors: Smith, Emma
Douglas, Graeme
First Published: 7-May-2013
Publisher: Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Citation: International Journal of Inclusive Education, 2013, in press
Abstract: Standards-based accountability approaches in education are increasingly being adopted in many industrialised countries. This tends to involve the scrutiny of student performance in national academic tests and then holding schools accountable for subsequent progress. International assessments such as Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) are not accountability measures in themselves, but are often utilised in a similar way and national policies are judged against performance in these tests. Drawing upon the examples of PISA and national assessments in the USA, this paper explores how students with special educational needs and disability (SEND) are included in, and served by, these assessment policies. The analysis suggests that while these approaches are inclusive in their intent (most obviously through efforts to include students with SEND in testing) they may poorly represent the progress of these students. It is argued that more equitable inclusion of students with SEND must find a balance between accountability measures which measure performance in traditional attainment-focused tests and other relevant assessments which are meaningful to the given student and/or SEND sub-group.
DOI Link: 10.1080/13603116.2013.788222
ISSN: 1360-3116
eISSN: 1464-5173
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: © 2013, Taylor & Francis. Deposited with reference to the publisher’s archiving policy available on the SHERPA/RoMEO website.
Description: This is an Author's Accepted Manuscript of an article published as Emma Smith & Graeme Douglas: Special educational needs, disability and school accountability: an international perspective, International Journal of Inclusive Education, (2013) © Taylor & Francis, available online at:
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, School of Education

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