Family-centered practices for families of Latino heritage with young children with disabilities in rural areas

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Mariana Mereoiu (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Judith Niemeyer

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to examine the extent to which early childhood educators implement family-centered practices with families of Latino heritage in rural areas and who have young children with disabilities. This research also investigated factors that may influence implementation of practices within the family-centered approach, such as education, access to professional development opportunities and experiences in the field, as well as challenges and needs related to implementation from the viewpoint of early childhood teachers. Finally, the study examined teachers' views on the influences of their professional and cultural background on the extent and ways they use family-centered approach in their practice. To better understand these aspects, quantitative and qualitative data was collected to explore the extent to which teachers reported to employ family-centered practices, as well as the influence of the above-mentioned variables at the implementation level. The responses of 44 participants collected with a survey were analyzed to explore the first questions of this study. Individual interviews with a subsample of 10 participants were conducted to explore the latter questions. The results of this study indicate that teachers report to implement family-centered practices to an overall high extent. However, the findings of the qualitative data indicate that although teachers are reporting to use family-centered approach in some areas of their practices, they are reporting critical needs in others. In addition, results indicate there may be a significant relationship between variables such as extent of experience of working with families of Latino heritage, access to professional development opportunities, or extent of experience in the current teaching position, and the extent to which professionals use family-centered practice approach.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2011
Family-centered, Latino, Rural
Hispanic American children $x Mental health
Children with disabilities $x Care $z United States
Hispanic American children $x Counseling of
Parents of children with disabilities $x Services for $z United States
Rural families $x Services for $z United States

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