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Preparation of Foreign Language Teachers to Teach Students with Disabilities in Arab-Speaking Countries: A Framework for Action

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Abdallah, Mahmoud; Al-Bulushi, Ali; Emam, Mahmoud
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Across the globe, several countries face challenges in teaching foreign language (FL) to students in general and to students with Special Educational Needs (SEN) in particular. In Arab-speaking countries, the challenges are doubled given the lack of a support system, the absence of adequate resources, the challenges associated with teaching FL in general, and the existence of several barriers that schools continue to grapple with (Emam, 2016; Fareh, 2010; Eno, 2018). English is perhaps the most rapidly growing language that is introduced as a foreign or second language in several countries due to its status as an international language of education and business. In Arab-speaking countries, English is introduced as a FL from early elementary grades, although a number of countries began to introduce it from grade 1 (Eno, 2018; Al-Abri, Emam, & Al-Seyabi, 2019; Mahmoud, 2015). In general, students with SEN include students with disability or other conditions that could affect their learning outcomes. The category of students with SEN may include children with health-related issues, disadvantaged students, students from marginalized families, and minority students. The current article aims to develop a framework of action to give a thrust to the preparation of FL teachers to teach students with SEN in Arab-speaking countries. Our endeavour is based on reviewing the existing literature on good practices on IE in across countries and building on the research that was conducted on Inclusive Education (IE) in the Arab contexts to date.