Country information for Denmark - Assessment within inclusive education systems
The decision as to whether a child’s development requires special consideration or support rests upon teachers’ and parents’ experience with the educational process and can be followed by a specific assessment in each individual case. The head teacher is responsible for all decisions about supplementary education or help to the student, following evaluation of the student’s needs and consultations with teachers and parents. If there is doubt about the support required, the educational and psychological counselling service can be called to help with further testing and consultation with teachers and the pupil and their parents. Parents can ask for support from the educational-psychological advisory team to clarify the child’s needs, but there is no condition for offering support in inclusive settings.
Normally teacher(s) in mainstream settings evaluate a given pupil’s special needs. The local educational-psychological advisory services are obliged to give a statement upon the head teacher’s request. Parents can contact the local education authorities or the educational-psychological advisory services for help, but it is the head teacher of the school who decides about the need for this service. The educational-psychological advisory services look into the nature of the need and make proposals for remedying it. The head teacher of the school decides whether a pupil will be referred to supplementary or to special needs education.
Supplementary education can be given to students to meet their individual support needs. It can be given as support in the classroom, support in small groups inside or outside the classroom, as individual support during a period or as practical support, according to the learner’s needs. Supplementary education can be supervised by experts from inside and outside the school.
If students need more support than the school can provide within mainstream education, the head teacher can ask for an evaluation of the need for special needs education, which is support of more than nine hours per week or special education in special classes or special schools. In that case, the educational-psychological advisory service shall be asked for an evaluation before the head teacher decides about transferring the child to special education. Students transferred to special education need to be monitored by the educational-psychological advisory services in order to make the necessary adjustments, including discontinuation of the support.
As far as possible, children are taught at the class level of their age. A pupil may, however, with their parents’ approval, attend the same grade for two years, if it is considered to be of benefit, or they may be offered 11 years of teaching in addition to the pre-school class.