A case study of self efficacy and parental involvement among Hispanic parents of children with disabilities



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Texas Tech University


The literature denotes a unique situation in which parents are assumed to be the recipients of knowledge regarding their children rather than the disseminators of information. Two distinct groups are represented in this case study of parents of children with disabilities: (1) parents from culturally and linguistically diverse homes; and (2) educators from the local education agency. Although legally mandated, parents and school representatives have struggled with the process of translating Congressional authorization into actuality.

Current effect of this reversal of roles has resulted in unbalanced power relationships among potential collaborators and has contributed to low parental self efficacy (Bandura, 1977). This research is an in-depth exploration of the failure of both parents and educators to achieve full compliance with the reauthorization of the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA) of 1997.

The compelling issue guiding this qualitative case study was derived from Bandura's (1977) social- cognitive-learning perspective: how does parental self-efificacy influence minority parent involvement in the education of elementary school children with disabilities? Research considered five underlying questions: (1) how well do parents understand the Individuals with Education Disabilities Act (1997); (2) how well do parents understand the evaluation and placement process; (3) how well do parents understand the Individualized Education Program; (4) what do parents contribute to the development and implementation of the Individualized Education Program; and (5) how do parental perceptions of school practices impact parental involvement?