A unique website on children's education with disabilities created at Palacký University

Photo: Lukáš Trčka
Tuesday 12 September 2023, 12:00 – Text: Martina Vysloužilová

The Faculty of Education at Palacký University is introducing a new tool at the beginning of the school year that will facilitate the education of children, students, and learners with special educational needs (SEN). Teachers, teaching assistants, and staff from advisory facilities will have a comprehensive overview of their own authored materials, documents, and videos they need for their daily work, all in one place. The new website will not only save them time but also provide valuable insights, practical examples, and inspiration.

A team of experts from the Institute of Special Education Studies at Palacký University has adapted the content of the website at spolecnevzdelavani.upol.cz to be as understandable and clear as possible. The materials are available for free, and the authors have categorized them according to content criteria and the type of student's disadvantage.

The website contains over a hundred authored outputs from the past thirteen years.

Users of the website will find more than a hundred educational methodologies, catalogues of support measures, career counseling methodologies, and three attractive outputs – Education Atlases for children, students, and learners with special educational needs.

"This is the result of the work of dozens of educators from all over the Czech Republic who have been collaborating with us as authors since 2010. We will be pleased if colleagues from nursery, primary, and secondary schools find their 'own' methodological material," said Professor Jan Michalík from the Faculty of Education at Palacký University, who is behind the creation of most of the offered publications. His colleague Pavlína Baslerová adds, "We have provided a detailed description of all the support measures currently available in schools for students with special educational needs."

The number of students with behavioral problems in schools increases every year. Therefore, the team of authors has thoroughly focused on mapping all possible needs and situations that teachers may encounter during their teaching and counseling practice.

"Not only in the catalogue for supporting the education of students with behavior disorders, but also in the catalogues and methodologies designed to support students with autism spectrum disorders, teachers will find examples and procedures for their management," added Zuzana Žampachová, head of the Special Education Center for students with autism spectrum disorders in Brno.

Videos show specific examples from the lives of graduates of practical schools.

The portal's content also addresses specific examples from practice and collaboration between schools and potential future employers. For instance, one video captures the story of two practical school students from Pardubice who help in a local “healthy canteen”. Such insights into the lives of graduates can be motivating for many users of the new website.

"The new portal is unique in its integrity and complexity for advisory workers. It serves as an inspiration when writing recommendations for SEN," described Veronika Míková from the Special Education Center in České Budějovice.

Pedagogue Jiří Vymětal from the Svatoplukova Elementary School in Olomouc also appreciated that all materials, including methodologies, are available in one place: "Our school has a high number of students with SEN. Especially the catalogue of support measures is the foundation for our discussions on the education of individual students."

The Institute of Special Education Studies at Palacký University is the largest institution in the Czech Republic for the pre-graduate training of specialists for working with students in the target group. Over the last 15 years, with the support of the Ministry of Education, Youth, and Sports of the Czech Republic and funding from the European Social Fund, they have prepared more than 150 specific outputs.


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