Ana Correia, Elisa Monteiro, Vitor Teixeira, Angus Kuok, Chris Forlin


Macau Special Administration Region (Macau SAR) is in the process of revising legislation concerning special and inclusive education. While the institutional discourse revolves around establishing inclusive education, it is unclear as to how the proposed changes will enable or depress this from occurring. This research, therefore, examined teachers’ attitudes towards inclusion as an indication of how well the new legislation may be received. Specifically, it investigated the interplay between 508 teachers working in private schools in Macau, that identified themselves as being inclusive schools, and teachers’ sentiments and attitudes towards the acceptance of inclusion and the role that Confucian values might play in shaping these attitudes. Discussion focusses on four key outcomes that need to be addressed if a significant improvement in including all children in regular schools in Macau is to be achieved. These include the need (1) to clarify the concept of inclusion at government, school, and teacher levels as it currently has ambiguous meaning; (2) to provide teachers with more opportunities to have systematic contacts with students with SEN, as this is crucial to improving their sentiments and attitudes toward people with disability; (3) to provide professional learning about inclusive education with better partnerships between teacher education institutions and schools to bridge theory and practice; and (4) to review the hidden influence of the subtle levels of time-honoured Confucian beliefs in Macau, which are not manifest nor easily detected but possibly have a deep impact on day-to-day practices.


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inclusive education, special education needs, disability, inclusion, Macau SAR, cultural values, attitudes, Confucian heritage cultures

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