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30 years ago

While we may be moving towards social inclusion for pupils with additional support needs, the demand 30 years ago was for fully fledged "remedial" departments to teach "backward" pupils, as reported in The TES Scotland of November 1, 1974:

The greatest educational need at present is the establishment of remedial departments and principalships in secondary schools, said Mr R Gilhooley, assistant headteacher at Holyrood Secondary, Glasgow, on Saturday at an executive committee meeting of the western secondary district remedial section of the (Educational Institute of Scotland).

Pupils were not given the equal chance that was hoped for by being herded into mixed ability classes. The less able did not benefit at all from this, and many behavioural problems could be directly related to frustrations arising from it.

Many subject specialists in schools, some with special qualifications to teach backward pupils, were only too willing to teach these pupils for part of their teaching time, but they were also keen to work with certificate pupils, and their main interest was in their specialist subject.

It should be possible to make use of the valuable assistance of such teachers if there were a proper remedial teaching structure in secondary schools.

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