Improving Outcomes for Preschool Inclusion Students
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Type of Work44 pages
action research papers
ProgramMasters of Education
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Education -- Research papers (Graduate).
Current inclusion models often fail to produce the desired outcomes for many pre-school students. This research study sought to compare reading skills, placement and social skills outcomes for children who attended pre-school placements in high-functioning inclusive settings as opposed to self-contained settings. Literature reviewed for this study included topics such as issues in special education, special education practices, service delivery models and program implementation, teacher and paraprofessional training and evidence-based Pre-K programs and behavioral interventions. The study employed descriptive and quasi-experimental methods (comparing outcomes or dependent variables for groups enrolled in different placements, the independent variable) and a non-parametric test to describe differences between reading scores, kindergarten and first grade placements, and social emotional skills of similar groups of children who attended inclusive versus self-contained preschools. Twenty first grade students who met the criteria of interest were selected as a convenience sample for this study as they were accessible to this researcher in her role as Early Childhood Intervention Specialist. Data from the research study the results did not provide evidence that preschool placement is statistically significantly related to reading performance in first grade. Furthermore, preschool placement for this sample was not found to correlate significantly with kindergarten or first grade placements. Finally, teacher feedback on social and emotional functioning did not differ significantly for students who attended self-contained versus inclusive preschool classroom settings. Additional research with increased controls for student demographics, teacher quality, and disability status is recommended to inform educators regarding how variations in placements may effect long term outcomes for special education preschool students.