Confronting Marginalisation in Education: A Framework for Promoting Inclusion

Confronting Marginalisation in Education: A Framework for Promoting Inclusion

Confronting Marginalisation in Education: A Framework for Promoting Inclusion

Confronting Marginalisation in Education: A Framework for Promoting Inclusion


One of the key challenges facing schools today is that of reducing marginalisation amongst pupils in educational contexts. This timely book provides guidance and illustrative examples of the ways in which primary and secondary schools can include all of their students in the academic and social experiences they provide. Developed around a framework that practitioners and researchers can use in order to understand and address marginalisation, the author's approach takes account of the views of children and young people throughout. This framework consists of a unique four-step process:

  • Step 1: Opening doors: Enabling voices to emerge.
  • Step 2: Looking closely: Bringing concerns to the surface.
  • Step 3: Making sense of the evidence: Sharing data with learners.
  • Step 4: Dealing with marginalisation: Encouraging inclusive thinking and practice.

By helping practitioners to reach out to all learners, regardless of the labels assigned to them, the book explains how teachers can make sure that every child matters, and, in so doing, create a classroom that is all the more inclusive. Importantly, the book focuses on alllearners, including those who might experience marginalisation but whose voices might have not previously been heard.

Relevant to teachers of pupils of all ages, students on initial teacher education and undergraduate and postgraduate students, this book will also be of interest to researchers and academics who are focusing on the role of children's voices in promoting inclusive education.


This, my first book, is a result of a long-term engagement in the field of education, wearing different hats at different times: practitioner, researcher, academic, co-researcher. Many times people have asked me why marginalisation, where does this interest come from? It is not easy to answer this, but I guess working in schools for a long time, observing the kind of unfairness that sometimes surrounds particular students, led me to develop a particular interest in wanting to find out more – and, more importantly, to do something about it. In essence, this is what this book attempts to do.

A number of people have been influential for my work throughout the years: those who have helped me in refining my thinking, those who allowed me the space and freedom to make my dreams a reality, and those who showed me that there is a possibility for change. These are the people I would like to thank here.

First of all, I wish to acknowledge the contributions of all those children whom I taught, or worked with as a researcher. They taught me a great deal. They surprised me, they confronted me, they made me stop and think and, in so doing, pushed my thinking forward. Second, in my most recent role as a university lecturer, thanks go to my students, both undergraduate and postgraduate, who took on similar roles: challenging me, as well as supporting and embracing my ideas.

A headteacher I was fortunate enough to work with back in Cyprus, Mrs Popi Loizidou, has to be thanked here too: for believing in me and supporting my work, as well as giving me the space to operate in a rather tight system; and for being such an inspirational leader.

The other headteacher who has been, and continues to be, a true inspiration for me is my sister, Dr Demetra Messiou. She has been a leading example for many school teachers in Cyprus and observing her work has taught me a great deal. The discussions we had throughout all these years have shaped my thinking and practices in many ways. Special thanks on reading and commenting on earlier drafts of this book.

In 1995, as a postgraduate student, I attended the inaugural lecture of Professor Mel Ainscow at the University of Manchester. He was the newly appointed professor. There were several announcements inviting us to attend . . .

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