Physically dispersed but virtually reunited: stories of inclusion during lockdown

Erika Marie Pace


The article presents a qualitative study to which ten (N=10) generalist, subject and learning support teachers working in primary, lower, and higher secondary schools in the Italian regions of Campania (n=8) and Lazio (n=2) were recruited using convenience sampling. It proposes a narrative of the frontliners’ experience during the three months of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic who, notwithstanding physical and mental barriers, managed to create virtual bridges so as to ensure that no one is left behind. Underpinning the questions set for the interviews was an asset-based approach which oriented the participants’ reflection towards the identification of intrinsic and extrinsic strengths that were indispensable to guarantee not only education for all, but also that sense of “being there” and belonging, even if in a virtual learning environment. A thematic analysis approach was used to analyse the data collected, whereas the MAXQDA2020 software facilitated the organisation and coding process. Active and collaborative participation, proactive behaviour, and solidarity among teachers, school leaders, parents, and pupils were key. They mobilised their own school community to identify and capitalise individual and collective resources to work in unison towards a common objective and act as change agents. These results, albeit from a small sample, highlight how principles and values of health promotion and inclusive practices have been crucial even in times of crisis.

Parole chiave

Asset-based approach, COVID-19, Remote teaching, Inclusion, Interviews

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