The Experience of School for New Zealand Students with Down Syndrome: Parental Perspectives
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Education in Child and Family Psychology
The perspectives of New Zealand parents of children with Down syndrome regarding their children’s experience of school were explored in the present analysis, based on a study carried out by the Champion Centre, an early intervention service in Christchurch, New Zealand. Participants were 137 parents of children with Down syndrome who had experienced the New Zealand formal education system. They took part in a survey, designed to explore the outcomes and achievements of individuals with Down syndrome in New Zealand. The results of the present analysis indicated that parents are typically satisfied with the experience their children with Down syndrome have of school. It highlighted considerable variation in the experiences they have of school, but also emphasised some general trends and themes. Such efforts to clarify individual as well as shared characteristics and experiences among children with Down syndrome will contribute to ongoing efforts to enhance their experience of school and consequently, their active, valued participation in the classroom, school, and society in general.