The role of home basd education in the development of children with multiple and severe disabilities : A case of the lusaka-central zone home based education programme
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The purpose of the study was to explore the role Home Based Education plays in the development of children with severe and multiple disabilities. A survey design was used in conducting this research. Data was collected through questionnaires, semi-structured interview schedules, document analysis, observations and focus group discussions. The target population comprised all basic school teachers, parents, children and programme coordinators in the Home Based Education Programme under study in Lusaka district. The sample size was twenty-five respondents comprising ten home based teachers, ten parents/caregivers and five coordinators from the home based education programme. The objectives of the study were: (i) To examine the type of training provided to teachers as home visitors. (ii) To explore the type of training offered to parents in terms of skills, roles and values in taking care of the children. (iii) To examine the impact of the home based education programme on children with severe and multiple disabilities. The study used both qualitative and quantitative methods in the collection of data. The Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) was used to analyse quantitative data from which frequencies, percentages and tables were generated while qualitative data obtained through interviews, observations and focus group discussions were coded and grouped by establishing the emerging themes. The study found out that the training provided to home based teachers was very important in the planning and implementation of the educational programme for children with severe and multiple disabilities. It helps teachers to understand the development of children with disabilities in order to provide appropriate educational experiences and help the parents as well. The study has also recognised the value of the skills, values and knowledge provided to parents. The training is significant in the provision of education to children with severe and multiple disabilities because in most cases children with severe disabilities have failed to secure early access to school in special and/or inclusive schools due to the severity levels of their disabilities. Therefore, parental involvement in the education of children with severe and multiple disabilities is cardinal as such disabilities have no cure and thus warrant long-term care and support. The study revealed that the activities provided in the home based education; socialisation, cognitive, language development, infant stimulation, motor/physical development and activities for daily living have a huge impact in the development of children with severe and multiple disabilities The study recommended that: (i) There is need to train more Home Based Education teachers by MoE to carter for the ever increasing number of children who have severe and multiple disabilities. (ii) MoE should introduce and intensify training for parents who have children with severe and multiple disabilities. (iii) Policy makers and care providers in various levels of government and within the community should adopt a rights-based approach to the provision of health and education services to all types of disabled children. (iv) The Home Based Education Programme should be recognised as an effective strategy or approach for rehabilitation of children with disability, since it has proved that it is fairly easy to use and monitor.
- Education