From Inclusion To Exclusion From School: Transforming The Lives Of Young People With Special Educational Needs And Disabilities?

24th February 2020 : 17:00 - 18:30

Category: Public Seminar

Speaker: Jill Porter and Ruth Moyse (University of Reading)

Location: Department of Education, Seminar Room A

Convener: Harry Daniels

Convener: Ian Thompson

Audience: Public

This seminar is part of our public seminar series on ‘Exclusion from School and its Consequences’, led by the Department of Education and convened by Harry Daniels (Professor of Education) and Ian Thompson (Associate Professor of English Education & Director of PGCE).


About the Public Seminar Series


The University of Oxford Department of Education’s Public Seminar Series are held on a termly basis throughout the academic year and are designed to engage wider audiences in topical research areas from across the department. Seminars are free to attend and held on most Mondays during term from 5pm. Each seminar is convened by a member of the department and speakers include academics from across the department, the wider University, as well as internationally recognised professionals from across the globe.

All public seminars led by the department are free to attend and open to all.

All upcoming seminars are publicised, in advance, on the department’s event pages and where possible recorded and made available on the University’s podcast site.

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Seminar abstract


Government statistics indicate that children and young people with special educational needs are five times more likely to be excluded from secondary schools, and account for just under half of excluded pupils. This seminar will explore the process of formal and informal exclusion from the macro, meso and micro level to understand some of the complex interactions between policy, school and individual factors. The significance of these on the lives of young people will be illustrated with reference to data drawn from the topical life histories of autistic girls. These portray the experience of having ones’ needs continually underestimated or misunderstood coupled with a lack of in-school support.


About the speakers


Professor Jill Porter was formerly Professor of Education at the Institute of Education, University of Reading where she co-convened the research group “Improving Equity and Inclusion through Education”.

She has undertaken a wide range of research in the field of disability and special educational needs. A core theme that unites her research is the relationship between the way we conceptualise disability, the practices of identification and assessment and the organisational and pedagogic responses that result. She was principal investigator on a series of government funded projects to develop key identifiers of disability and produced a tool kit that schools can use to understand the barriers to participation and learning.

Ruth Moyse is a Doctoral Researcher at the University of Reading. Her background is in education, having trained initially as a primary teacher, and she worked in schools for 10 years. Her interest in autism began when her daughter was diagnosed as autistic at the age of five. Realising that the stories and voices of autistic girls were markedly absent from educational research, she decided to address the imbalance. Ruth’s current research seeks to understand why a growing number of autistic adolescent girls stop attending mainstream secondary schools in England.

Along the way she was also diagnosed as autistic and flies mainly under the radar as @mum2aspergirl.