Parental agency and early intervention

Rix, J and Paige-Smith, A (2006). Parental agency and early intervention. In: BERA Conference 2006, 6-9 Sep 2006, Warwick, UK.


This paper considers the agency and identity of parents of children with Down syndrome within early intervention. It draws upon semi-structured, conversational interviews with nine parents and the reflections of one of the authors upon their experiences within early intervention programmes. It considers how representations of the deficit model permeate the participation of the parent in this process. It explores the multiple identities of the parents and links these to notions of parental participation within the current policy context of early intervention in England. The notion of parental agency is an implicit driver within the current early intervention programmes, yet it appears to be compromised by the nature of those programmes.

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