14 SES 13 A, Family Education, Parenting and School-Family-Community Links III
In this paper, I will draw attention to the complex and often hidden role of mothers whose children need extensive support in their education and how the situation affects their personal and social life.
In recent years, there has been a highly significant shift in focus towards the role of parents’ involvement in their children’s education. A range of researches indicate that home-school collaboration benefits all children (Cole, 2004; Dale, 1996; Epstein, Sanders, Simon, Salinas, Jansorn, Voorhis, 2002; Tomlinson, 1991). As part of school reforms in the past few decades, educational policies, both internationally and locally, prescribe the importance of home-school collaboration and the idea that parents should be given an opportunity to contribute to school improvement at different levels of the school environment (Epstein, et al., 2002; Tomlinson, 1991).
Most of the literature on home-school relations uses the term ‘parent’ when referring to the children contacts to schools without highlighting the fact that it is mothers who usually assume the responsibility of the involvement. According to Cole (2004, 2007) her research indicates that this responsibility do affect women roles in other areas of their lives. She argues that demands and responsibility on mothers on behalf of the school are increasing in modern society e.g. such as schools expectations concerning children knowledge and skills prior to schooling and “[F]ailure to acquire such knowledge reflects on mothers,” (Cole, 2004, p. 13).
The Icelandic education system is based on equal opportunities and an appropriate education for all children, no matter what their physical or mental capabilities may be, their social emotional situation or linguistic development (Lög um grunnskóla nr. 91/2008)). This means as well that schools are supposed to meet students where they are by individualise their learning support.
The main research questions is: In what way is the adaptation of children with additional needs in regular schools up to their mothers?
Cole, B. (2004). Mother-Teachers: Insights into Inclusion. London: David Fulton Publishers. Cole, B. (2007). Mothers, gender and inclusion in the context of home-school relations. Support for Learning 22(4), 165-173. Retrieved 29 August 2011 from: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-9604.2007.00467.x/pdf Dale, N. (1996). Working with families of children with special needs. Partnership and practice. London & New York: Routledge. Epstein, J.L., Sanders, M.G., Simon, B.S., Salinas, K.C., Jansorn, N.R., Voorhis, F.Lvan. (2002). School, family, and community parthership. Your handbook for action. (2nd ed.). Thousands Oaks: Corwin press, inc. Lichtman, M. (Ed.). (2013). Qualitative research in education. A user’s guide. (3d ed.). Los Angeles: Sage. Lög um grunnskóla nr. 91/2008 Silverman, D. (2000). Doing qualitative reserach. A practical handbook. London: Sage Publications. Tomlinson, S. (1991). Teachers and Parents: Home-School Partnership London: Institute for Public Policy Research.
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