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ERIC Number: ED557129
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 158
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3210-5621-1
Let Them Be the Unique Person That They Are: Parent Perceptions of the Social Emotional Needs of Students with Intellectual Disabilities during the Transition to High School
Harkins, Elizabeth A.
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, American International College
Students with intellectual disabilities (ID) who experience challenges in social and emotional development often encounter limited opportunities to develop personal goals, which in turn influences their adult contributions to society. Difficulties with social emotional development and self-determination skills are often exacerbated when children transition to adolescence, and in many cases these difficulties extend into adulthood (Sabornie, Thomas, & Coffman, 1989; Gallagher, 1991). Factors such as fear, perceived negative attitudes, and a lack of support from the community all contribute to a sense of disconnect for children with ID and their families (Itkonen, 2007). Without regular access to naturally occurring social opportunities (Johnson et al., 2000), children with ID may experience significant social and emotional challenges, including social isolation or mistreatment, low self-esteem or low self-worth, and limited independence throughout their lives (Wehmeyer & Palmer, 2003). This phenomenological study utilized semi-structured interviews with 12 parents to examine their perceptions of their children's social emotional development during the transition from middle to high school. Various aspects of special education programming were also explored. The purposeful sample drew from the parents of high school students who were identified with ID. The interviews were coded and analyzed for themes that emphasized the importance of social emotional development, transition needs, and the meaningful inclusion of students with ID in the general population. From the perspectives of the participants, eight primary themes emerged, focusing on the emotional dynamics of students' transitions, external views of transition programming, and social aspects of school cultures. The author proposes several suggestions for future research along with recommendations for educators and parents as they enact sustainable educational change sensitive to students with ID as they transition ultimately to adulthood. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools; High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A