Friday, 8 May 2009

Rejoice, rejoice

CE in US special education literature

Katherine T. Ratcliffe and Cindy Sanekane
Conductive Education: benefits and challenges
Teaching Exceptional Children
May/June 2009, pp. 66-72

A highly valued stringer from North America sends news this morning of the first article on Conductive Education to have been published in a US special-educational journal.
  • What are the practical implications of this article? Immediately, as far as school boards, administrators, school principles and special educators in general in the US are concerned, they now have an immediate, accessible window on to Conductive Education, written in the language that they understand, and published by as authoritative source as there is in their field (the Council for Exceptional Children). As far as CE centers are concerned, they had better have some good answers ready!
  • What is its academic significance? Maybe no more than a flash-in-the-pan never-to-be-repeated appearance. Maybe in the longer term the beginnings of break-out into the big league, the grown-up (and vicious) world of American educational research, marking the beginning of the end of a long, sad chapter in researching Conductive Education.
  • What's the story behind this article? There must be one, every publication has a story, often more interesting that its contents! Two new names on the block.
  • What's it like? This will take further careful evaluation by everyone with serious interest in the public understanding of Conductive Education, and serious concerns about developing CE in the twenty-first century (not just in the United States). What this article says, its empirical base, its understandings and evaluations, are important.
For the moment, however, let us rejoice in this break-out. How everything turns out is for the future, but this is something that those in Conductive Education do not have just to sit passively by and accept. It is something that people in Conductive Education can potentially influence by how they use and respond to this publication (and, one hopes, many more to come). So, don't just sit on your hands.

Conductive World will return to the initial questions posed above, and maybe pose some others. What questions do you have?

Seek, find and enjoy a copy of this article (not, I am afraid, published in an open-source publication, but still cheap at the price):

[PDF] TEACHING Exceptional Children
File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat -
View as HTML “Conductive Education: Benefits and Challenges” (Ratliffe). 10. Conductive education has been shown to be less effective than other treatment methods.

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