Source: Review of Educational Research, 85(3), p. 319-352, September 2015
The notion of the continuum is applied to special education in diverse contexts across many nations. This article explores its conceptual underpinnings, drawing on a systematic search of the literature to review recurring ideas associated with the notion and to explicate both its uses and shortcomings.
Through a thematic analysis of the literature, the research team derived 29 continua, situated within six broad groupings (space, students, staffing, support, strategies, and systems). This provides a clear structure for reconsidering the issues that the notion of the continuum is supposed to describe and enables a reconceptualization of how the delivery of services is represented.
The authors present the initial underpinnings for a community of provision in which settings and services work together to provide learning and support for all children and young people in their locality.