Investigating the implementation of learning support strategies by teachers in the intermediate phase of a school in the Western Cape
Joorst, Rene Hazel
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The purpose of the study was to investigate the implementation of learning support strategies by Intermediate Phase teachers. The study also determined the factors (enhancing or limiting) that impact upon the successful implementation of learning support strategies specifically in a rural school. The study was conducted at one primary school in the Western Cape. The research participants were ten teachers involved in offering learner support at this school. Focus group discussions as well as in-depth interviews were used to explore the teachers' views of their support strategies. The data was analysed using a thematic approach. The main finding of this study is that a huge gap exists between inclusive education policy expectations and the actual manifestation of teachers' support to learners with learning difficulties. The findings of the study reveal a combination of external as well as internal and systemic factors working in conjunction and culminating in a lack of capacity amongst teachers. This study recommends a review of policies with the aim of providing opportunities for a thorough understanding of new concepts and practices, focused and professional development of teachers in the area of learner support and more monetary and infrastructural resources.