Dr Ilektra Spandagou is a Senior Lecturer at the Sydney School of Education and Social Work, the University of Sydney. Her research interests include inclusive education policy and practice, disability, classroom diversity, and curriculum differentiation. Ilektra has been involved in teacher education in inclusive education in Australia, Austria, Cyprus and Greece. Her publications include the book Inclusive Education: International Policy & Practice (co-authored with A.C. Armstrong and D. Armstrong) and published by Sage).


2007 Grad Cert in Educational Studies (Higher Education), University of Sydney,


2003 PhD, University of Sheffield, UK
1996 Master in Education, University of Sheffield, UK
1994 BEd (Early Childhood Education), University of Athens, Greece


2011- Senior Lecturer, Inclusive Education, University of Sydney
2006-2010 Lecturer, Inclusive Education, University of Sydney
2005-2006 Lecture level appointments (Winter Semester), Department of Special Education and Department of Pre-School Education, University of Thessaly


2005-2006 Post-doctoral researcher (funded by EU “Pythagoras II – Support of University Research Teams), Department of Early Childhood Education,

University of Athens, Greece

2002-2006 Teaching Tutor, Faculty of Early Childhood Education, National and

Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece

2000-2002 Research Fellow, National Evaluation Team of On Track, School of

Education and Department of Sociological Studies, University of Sheffield, UK.

1994-2000 Research Assistant (short-term contracts), Faculty of Early Childhood

Education, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece

1994-1995 Support teacher in pilot integration program funded by Department of

Education and University of Athens, Greece


2018 Teaching Award Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Teaching
2017 OLE Disability Awareness and Inclusivity, University of Sydney, Co-leader


2015 Non-EU teaching mobility award, University of Vienna, Austria
2015 Large Educational Innovation Grant, University of Sydney, Principal

Researcher Dr Michelle Bonati ($16,563)

2015 EDSW Dean’s Education Innovation Grants, University of Sydney, Principal

Researcher Dr Nicole Brunker ($3,000)

2009-2016 Special Education Retraining Program Funded by the Department of

Education, NSW (Lead by A/Prof David Evans)

2010 Faculty of Education and Social Work Teaching Excellence Award



2017- Academic Advisory Panel member of All Means All is the Australian Alliance for Inclusive Education

2018- The Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network Human Research Ethics Committee (SCHN HREC) –Qualitative Research Expert


2017-2019      Academic Board – University Executive Culture Taskforce, University of Sydney 2018-2019   NTEU representative on the Academic Workload Monitoring Committee

Faculty FASS

2019-2018       Faculty Board, Faculty of Arts and Social Policy

2019-2017       Research Education Committee


2017-               Research Higher Degree Coordinator, Sydney School of Education and Social Work



Spandagou, I., Little, C., Evans, D., & Bonati, M. (under contract). Inclusive Education in Schools and Early Childhood Settings, Springer.

Armstrong, A.C., Armstrong, D., & Spandagou, I. (2010). Inclusive education:  International policy & practice. London, UK: Sage ISBN 978-1-84787-941-7.

Zoniou-Sideri, A., & Spandagou, I. (2005.) (Eds.) Education and Blindness; Current trends and perspectives, Athens, Gr: Greek Letters [in Greek].

Chapters in Books

Spandagou, I. (2018). A long journey: Disability and inclusive education in international law. In K. Trimmer, R. Dixon and Y. S. Findlay (Eds.), The Palgrave handbook of education law for schools, (pp. 413-428). Cham: Palgrave Macmillan

Spandagou, I. (2015). Inclusive education as a challenge for policy and practice – international and comparative aspects. In G. Biewer, E.T. Böhm, & S. Schütz (Eds.). Inclusive Pedagogy in the Secondary School (pp. 25-38), Stuttgart: Kohlhammer [In German].

Spandagou, I. (2014). Adapting the curriculum in the school years. In K. Cologon (Ed.) Inclusive education in the early years: Right from the start (pp. 242-259), Melbourne, Vic: Oxford University Press.

Spandagou, I. (2013). The Elusive search for inclusive education in a comparative study. In S. Symeonidou, & K. Beauchamp-Pryor (Eds.), Purpose, process and future direction of disability research (pp. 59-72). Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.

Spandagou, I. (2011). The use of museums in inclusive education of children with disabilities. Children Museum (Despoina Kalesopoulou) (Ed.), Παιδί και Εκπαίδευση στο Μουσείο: Θεωρητικές Αφετηρίες, Παιδαγωγικές Πρακτικές (Child and Education in Museums: theoretical orientations, pedagogical practices, in Greek) (pp. 113–124), Athens, Gr: Patakis [in Greek].

Armstrong, A.C., & Spandagou, I. (2010). Communicating inclusively. In R. Ewing, T. Lowrie, & Higgs (Eds.), Teaching and communicating. Rethinking professional experiences (pp. 65- 75), Melbourne, Vic: Oxford University Press.

Zoniou-Sideri, A., Karagianni, P., Deropoulou-Derou, E., Spandagou, I. (2006). Educational assessment of students with disabilities; A critical analysis of the position of the Greek Political parties (pp. 333-347). In D.M. Kakana, K., Botsoglou, N. Chaniotakis, & E. Kavalari (eds.) Assessment in Education; Pedagogical and Instructional dimension. Thessalonica, Gr: Brothers Kyriakidi Publishing House [in Greek].

Zoniou-Sideri, A., & Spandagou, I. (2005). Introduction to the Greek edition of R.M Hodapp, Development and disabilities; Intellectual, sensory and motor impairment, Athens, Gr: Metaixmio [In Greek] (ISBN 960-375-858-2.

Journal Articles

Mi kolci, J., Armstrong, D., Spandagou, I. (2016). Teachers’ perceptions of the relationship between inclusive education and distributed leadership in two Primary schools in Slovakia and New South Wales (Australia). Journal of Teacher Education for Sustainability, 18(2), 53-65.

Wood, P., Evans, D., & Spandagou, I. (2014). Attitudes of principals towards students with disruptive behaviour: An Australian perspective. Australasian Journal of Special Education, 38(1), 14-33.

Wood, P., Spandagou, I., & Evans, D. (2012). Principals’ confidence in managing disruptive student behaviour: Exploring geographical context in NSW primary schools. School Leadership & Management, 32(4), 375–395.

Armstrong, D., Armstrong, A. C., & Spandagou, I. (2011). Inclusion: By choice or by chance.

International Journal of Inclusive Education, 15(1), 29–39.

Graham, L., & Spandagou, I. (2011). From vision to reality: Views of primary school principals on inclusive education in New South Wales, Australia. Disability & Society, 26(2), 223–237.

McDougall, M., Evans, D., & Spandagou, I. (2009). Teaching phonics and sight words to Year  One through the medium of “working with words” and “games”. Special Education Perspectives, 18(1), 35-46.

Zoniou-Sideri, A., Karagianni, P., Deropoulou-Derou, E., & Spandagou, I. (2006). Inclusive discourse in Greece; Strong voices, weak policies. International Journal of Inclusive Education, 10(2-3), 279–291.

Refereed Full Length Published Conference Papers

Evans, D., Little, C., Spandagou, I., Atkinson, S., Boon, R., & McInnes, L. (2012). Developing a framework for including all teachers: The implications for designing and delivering a comprehensive in-service teacher education program. 7th International Conference on e- Learning (ICEL 2012), Reading, UK: Academic Publishing International Limited.

Tearle, K., & Spandagou, I. (2012). Learning support policy in Australia (New South Wales) and New Zealand; Discourses of influence. Paper presented at the AARE-APERA 2012 International Education Research Conference.

Hoskin, C., Evans, D., Little, C., & Spandagou, I. (2011). Examining the tensions of professional practice: Preparing quality special educators. In W. Beamish 2011 AASE National Conference: Tensions in Competing Agendas. Gold Coast, 28-30 September, 2011.

Armstrong, A.C., & Spandagou, I. (2010). Poverty, inclusion and inclusive education: Exploring the connections. Paper Presented at the AARE2009 International Education Research Conference. 29 November-3 December 2009 Canberra, Australia.

Spandagou, I., Evans, D., & Little, C. (2009). Primary education preservice teachers’ attitudes and perceptions on preparedness to respond to classroom diversity. Paper Presented at the AARE2008 International Education Research Conference. 30 November-4 December 2008, Brisbane, Australia.

Armstrong, D., Spandagou, I., Armstrong, A.C. (2009). One Nation Globalisation and Inclusive Education. Paper Presented at the AARE2008 International Education Research  Conference. 30 November-4 December 2008 Brisbane, Australia.

Gomes, V., & Spandagou, I. (2009). Peer assessment and sustainable graduate attributes. Paper presented at the 8th Worth Congress of Chemical Engineering on Challenges for a Changing World. 23-27 August 2009 Montreal, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

Magazines/Newspaper Articles

Graham, L., Spandagou, I., & deBruin, K. (3 May 2018). Gonski 2.0: there is evidence inclusive schooling will help those left behind. Conversation. https://theconversation.com/gonski-2-0- there-is-evidence-inclusive-schooling-will-help-those-left-behind-95934

Graham, L., & Spandagou, I. (13 October 2017). Not good enough Minister. Open letter to Simon Birmingham condemning lack of action on flawed education website. EduResearch Matters. AARE. http://www.aare.edu.au/blog/?p=2474

Graham, L., deBruin, K., & Spandagou, I. (10 July 2017). Are regular classroom teachers really  not qualified to teach students with special needs? EduResearch Matters. AARE. http://www.aare.edu.au/blog/?p=2292

Spandagou, I., Graham, L., & Whitburn, B (15 May 2017). Expensive new government funded website for schools fails to deliver.

Bonati, M., Spandagou, I., Evans, D., & Little, C. (12 November 2014). Separate curriculum for students  with disability no good  for anyone.  Conversation. https://theconversation.com/separate-curriculum-for-students-with-disability-no-good-for- anyone-33891

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