2016 TASH Conference has ended
Each year, the TASH Conference strengthens the disability field by connecting attendees to innovative information and resources, facilitating connections between stakeholders within the disability movement, and helping attendees reignite their passion for an inclusive world. This year’s conference theme, “Gateway to Equity,” explores inclusive communities, schools, and workplaces that support people with disabilities, including those with complex support needs, in living a fair, just, and balanced life. Return to TASH website.
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Friday, December 2 • 1:30pm - 2:20pm
Educational placement and decision-making for youth with autism: Parent perspectives LIMITED

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Limited Capacity seats available

Parents should play an active role in educational decision-making for their children, including educational placement decisions. However, many parents face barriers that negatively impact their ability to have input and describe challenging experiences working with school personnel. The present study investigated parents' experiences being involved in educational decision-making for their children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and their satisfaction with the outcomes of those decisions, their children's educational experience. Parents completed a survey regarding their ability to have input in educational decisions, satisfaction with school personnel, and satisfaction with their child's school experience. Correlation analyses indicated that school personnel knowledge of ASD and parent input satisfaction were strongly positively correlated with parent school satisfaction. Additionally, family income was significantly positively correlated with both parent input and overall school satisfaction. Sequential regressions showed that child and family characteristics largely did not predict parents' satisfaction or input once school variables were entered. Parents' satisfaction with their ability to have input and their satisfaction with their child's education were generally predicted by their knowledge of ASD, school staff knowledge of ASD, parent satisfaction with general and special education teachers, and parent relationships with school personnel. Additionally, parent input was a significant predictor of their satisfaction with their child's school experience. Specifically regarding placement, students with less significant ASD symptomology were more likely to be in general education settings. Finally, open-ended responses indicated that parents felt they had little choice in decision-making and had fluctuating experiences with school personnel. Many resorted to legal action or obtaining services outside of the school system to ensure their children an appropriate education. Results have implications for teacher preparation and the ways in which school personnel work with families to develop positive, collaborative relationships.

After attending this session, participants will be able to
  1. Identify at least four family and school factors that support parents' ability to have input in educational decisions;
  2. Summarize the unique concerns of parents with ASD regarding their children's educational experience, 
  3. Implement strategies and/or educator training that improves parent-school relationships, collaboration, and parent satisfaction.

avatar for Jennifer Kurth

Jennifer Kurth

Associate Professor, University of Kansas
Inclusive Education

Friday December 2, 2016 1:30pm - 2:20pm CST
Wabash Cannonball 1820 Market Street, St. Louis, MO 63103