Parent involvement practices in special Education institutions in Zambia: A case of Bauleni Special School in Lusaka District

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Musonda, Prisca
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The study examined parent involvement practices in the education of learners with special educational needs in Zambia with a specific focus on Bauleni Special School located in Lusaka district. The objectives of the study were to find out whether the school had a policy, how parents’ needs were being met, how parents’ potential contributions were being utilized and the barriers if any, to parent involvement. The research used a survey as its research design. The target population for the study included parents and teachers of learners with special educational needs. The sample consisted of forty two (42) respondents comprising of thirty one parents and eleven teachers. Purposive sampling was used to arrive at the sample. In collecting data, questionnaires were administered to both the parents and teachers. Qualitative and quantitative data analysis methods were used. The findings revealed parents said the school had no written policy but teachers indicated that there was one. It became apparent that the policy is in place but was not accessed by parents.From the study findings, it was also evident that parents’ needs were being met by the school and that parents’ potential contributions were identified and in many cases, utilized. However, the findings showed that there were challenges facing parent involvement in the education of children with special educational needs. The major recommendations arising from the research findings were that more parent/parent workshops should be held so that parents share ideas; parent-teacher school meetings should be encouraged; and that the school should involve parents more in the development of the children’s individualized education plans so that proper assessment of the children were conducted.
Special education--study and teaching--Zambia , Education--parent participation--Zambia