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How Do Practitioners Create Inclusive Environments For Children With Chronic Health Conditions? An Exploratory Case Study

Musgrave, Jackie (2014). How Do Practitioners Create Inclusive Environments For Children With Chronic Health Conditions? An Exploratory Case Study. EdD thesis University of Sheffield.

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Abstract

The concept of inclusion within the English education system is often taken for granted. There are a number of factors that can impact on inclusive practice and this demands careful exploration. Chronic health conditions (CHCs), such as anaphylaxis, asthma, diabetes, epilepsy and eczema, pose particular challenges to inclusion for practitioners who teach, educate and care for children under the age of five years in day care settings. These conditions can have a significant effect on children’s health, especially in the minority world. However, there is a paucity of research about how the symptoms affect children’s early education.

This mixed-methods study collected quantitative data by sending a postal survey to 60 settings in order to find out how many children are affected by these conditions in day care settings. Four of the surveyed settings went on to participate in the qualitative aspect of the study. Qualitative data were also collected from parents of children with CHCs and the study included observations of a child in his early childhood setting over the course of a year.

The findings revealed that 11% of children attending the settings in this study had been diagnosed with one or more CHCs and that CHCs had a profound effect on children and their parents. Parents reported that knowledge of the specific conditions is important for practitioners to have in order to create inclusive relationships with them. Practitioners in this study demonstrated a collaborative approach to leadership when creating inclusive environments. However, the findings revealed tensions for practitioners regarding the inclusion of all children in the curriculum. The findings suggest that achieving inclusion may therefore be problematic for some children. However, the communication skills, knowledge of CHCs and willingness of practitioners were vital to the inclusion of children with CHCs in their early education.

Item Type: Thesis (EdD)
Copyright Holders: 2014 The Author
Keywords: chronically ill children; inclusive education; early childhood education
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies (WELS)
Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies (WELS) > Education, Childhood, Youth and Sport
Item ID: 53053
Depositing User: Jackie Musgrave
Date Deposited: 05 Mar 2018 14:57
Last Modified: 07 Dec 2018 17:11
URI: http://oro.open.ac.uk/id/eprint/53053
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