Parent involvement in an early childhood special education program: A descriptive analysis of parent demographics and level of involvement

University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Psychology in the Schools (Impact Factor: 0.72). 07/1993; 30(3):255 - 263. DOI: 10.1002/1520-6807(199307)30:3<255::AID-PITS2310300308>3.0.CO;2-3


The present study was conducted to evaluate the level of parent involvement in an early childhood special education program in a large midwestern urban school district. Areas surveyed included parents' current input, participation, and desired level of participation in the initial eligibility evaluation, the Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) meeting, and the initial Individual Education Plan (1EP). Additional areas assessed included parent-teacher contact, overall satisfaction with the early childhood program, and services the parent might be interested in receiving. Generally, parents were satisfied with their involvement and input in their child's educational program. Differences between parents' level of income, education, race, gender, and marital status and their subsequent level of involvement in their child's education were noted.

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    • "There is little quantitative research, however, to guide inquiry in this area. It is not difficult to conceive that, given the myriad challenges associated with immigrant status in our society, parent satisfaction with school contact could be important for promoting quality mesosystem interactions (Bronfenbrenner & Morris, 1998; Shriver & Kramer, 1993) and complementary learning systems between home and school (Harvard Family Research Project, 2005), as well as higher levels of parent involvement among immigrant families, particularly with young children entering preschool, a period during which many families encounter the formal U.S. education system for the first time. "
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    ABSTRACT: In this study we examined the relationships between family demographics and level of satisfaction with school contact as possible determinants of multiple dimensions of family involvement in early childhood education. Participants included 171 urban, Head Start parents (108 mothers and 63 fathers). Results revealed that for mothers, having less than a high school education was negatively associated with levels of home-school conferencing. For fathers, primary language spoken in the home was associated with both levels of home-school conferencing and school-based involvement, with Polish- and Spanish-speaking fathers participating less compared with their English-speaking counterparts. In addition, fathers of boys reported higher levels of home-school conferencing. Involvement at school was significantly associated with level of satisfaction with school contact for both mothers and fathers. Multilevel analyses revealed parent gender and satisfaction as the most salient predictors of involvement at the level of the family. Implications for future research, as well as family involvement practice and policy, are discussed.
    Journal of school psychology 11/2008; 46(5):551-73. DOI:10.1016/j.jsp.2008.06.001 · 2.31 Impact Factor
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    • "Stoner et al. (2005) concluded from studying parents' perceptions that all participants perceived that their children's initial IEP meeting had been traumatic, confusing, and complicated, and that their perception led to dissatisfaction with the special education system. Lack of knowledge pertaining to students' disabilities likely contributes to lack of participation among many parents (Fish, 2006; Fitzgerald & Watkins, 2006; Shriver & Kramer, 1993). Many educators assume that parents enter IEP meetings with sufficient knowledge (Fitzgerald & Watkins; Skinner, 1991), whereas parents are often reluctant to convey their lack of special education knowledge (Simpson, 1996). "
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    ABSTRACT: The author investigated parental perceptions of the individualized education program (IEP) meeting among 51 parents of students who were receiving special education services from 1 family support service agency. Survey questions pertained to the following areas: (a) IEP meeting experiences, (b) knowledge level of special education law, (c) relations with educators, (d) IEP meeting outcomes, and (e) recommended areas for improvement. The majority of parents responded favorably that their overall IEP meeting experiences had been positive. Most respondents had positive perceptions of the IEP meeting because of educators' valuing parents' input while treating parents with respect and as equal decision makers. Also, most parents agreed that they had a clear understanding of the IEP process and special education law.
    Preventing School Failure 09/2008; 53(1-1):8–14. DOI:10.3200/PSFL.53.1.8-14

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