The purpose of this quantitative study was to examine the attitudes of Pennsylvania public middle school principals toward the inclusion of students with disabilities in the regular education classroom. This study focused on factors that may affect the attitudes of middle school principals toward inclusion and on the relationship between these attitudes and the recommended appropriate placement of students with disabilities. A total of 135 middle school principals completed a modified version of Praisner's Principals Inclusion Survey. That data was analyzed using various descriptive statistics and correlation coefficients. Results showed that the majority of middle school principals in the state of Pennsylvania have positive attitudes toward inclusion. Although no statistically significant relationships were found between principals' attitudes toward inclusion and demographics, training, and credits (p > .05), the results suggested that middle school principals with special education teaching experience and special education credits are more likely to have favorable attitudes toward inclusion. A significant relationship was discovered between middle school principals' attitudes and their experience with students with disabilities (r = .195, p = .023). Similarly, a positive correlation was identified between the principals' experience with students with disabilities and their recommendation for the most appropriate placement (r = .438, p = <.0001). As a result, a recommendation from this study is for school district and higher education officials to ensure principals are equipped with the knowledge, expertise, and attitudes to successfully lead inclusive schools.
|Advisor:||Letwinsky, Karim M.|
|Commitee:||Duffy, Thomas, Frantz-Fry, Karen, Kropiewnicki, Mary, Kurelja, John|
|School Location:||United States -- Pennsylvania|
|Source:||DAI-A 76/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Middle School education, Special education|
|Keywords:||Attitudes, Inclusion, Middle school, Principal attitudes, Special education|
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