This qualitative phenomenological research was designed to understand how parenting a child with an intellectual disability affects the decisions made regarding parent involvement in educational practices. Little is understood about how parenting a child with a disability impacts the decisions parents make regarding educational involvement. This study used Hoover-Dempsey and Sandler’s model of parent involvement as a theoretical lens with a focus on parent role-construction and self-efficacy in helping the child academically. The target population was parents who have a child with an intellectual disability currently enrolled in school. A semi structured interview protocol was used to collect data from participants recruited from school district contacts and via social media outreach. The data were manually analyzed to find emerging themes from the interviews. The data collected answered how parenting a child with an intellectual disability affects the decisions parents make regarding school and home-based educational involvement and the impact of how parenting a child with a disability shaped the parents’ role-construction and self-efficacy in being able to help their child educationally. Four participating families met the requirements and consented to participate in a 90-minute interview conducted in person or via telephone. The participants were actively involved in the educational process of their children. The results showed school-based involvement was higher in the parents who had younger students when compared to the parents of the older students. Home-based involvement was consistent across all participants; although the focus was more on functional and life skills and less on academics. It was found that the parents’ role-construction was partially formed by having a child with an intellectual disability. Finally, all participants showed they had a strong sense of self-efficacy in being able to help their children academically, but there were behavioral and social needs they were not prepared for and are learning how to address the concerns. The results of the study showed how important communication is to this population of parents. This study shows the need for clear and inviting communication to the parents and that many decisions made by this group of parents are based on the needs of their child.
|Commitee:||Weinberg, Julia, Vance, Joanna|
|Department:||School of Education|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||DAI-A 81/6(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Special education, Disability studies, Individual & family studies|
|Keywords:||Parent involvement, Students with disabilities|
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