Developing inclusive education policy and practice in Zanzibar : collaborative action research

Resource type
Journal Article
Developing inclusive education policy and practice in Zanzibar : collaborative action research
This doctoral dissertation, which consists of three interrelated sub-studies and an overarching summary, explores the inclusive education development process in Zanzibar, Tanzania. The purpose of the research is to contribute to the development of inclusive policies and practices in order to increase the presence, participation and achievement of all learners. The overarching research question investigated in this research was as follows: How is inclusive education developed in Zanzibar, and how can it be better integrated into the education system? This question was divided into six sub-questions. Each of the three interrelated sub-studies in this dissertation focused on specific sub-questions. The data included several documents related to inclusive education development; interviews conducted with 20 teachers from two primary schools; these teachers’ reflective diaries, which were kept during their action research projects, and the researcher’s reflective diary. The data were analysed using qualitative content analysis and thematic analysis. The findings revealed that Zanzibar has taken several measures to make its education system more inclusive. These measures include acknowledging inclusive education in its 2006 education policy, drafting an inclusive education policy, introducing a re-entry policy for school girls who become pregnant, increasing the number of years of compulsory education from 10 to 12, removing school fees for both primary and secondary schools, providing in-service teacher training for inclusive education, recruiting inclusive education and life skills advisors and resource teachers, and introducing inclusive education courses in teacher training colleges. It is also worth noting that the teachers in this research experienced collaborative action research as valuable in developing their inclusive practices, despite the challenges they encounter in the course of conducting their projects. Despite its advantages, collaborative action research demands additional time from the teachers beyond their teaching responsibilities. The research participants found the teacher resource centres to be key in enhancing their professional development. This research shows the need to review the teaching methods and materials used in schools. Reforms in teacher education curricula are also needed in response to increasingly diverse learning needs and educational changes. In addition, this research emphasises the integration of inclusive education and collaborative action research into teacher education so that all teachers can teach inclusively. Both school-based organisational learning and school–community and school–university collaborations can foster collaborative school cultures and inclusive teacher education.
Jyväskylä studies in education, psychology and social research
Short Title
Developing inclusive education policy and practice in Zanzibar
09/06/2018, 16:38
Library Catalogue
Juma, S. (2018). Developing inclusive education policy and practice in Zanzibar : collaborative action research. Jyväskylä Studies in Education, Psychology and Social Research, 611.