‘I think most of the teachers go running when they see me’: The perceptions parents of dyslexic children on barriers to meaningful parent-school partnerships in Australia

Presentation


Leslie, Rachel. 2023. "‘I think most of the teachers go running when they see me’: The perceptions parents of dyslexic children on barriers to meaningful parent-school partnerships in Australia." Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE) 2023 Annual Conference. Melbourne, Australia 27 Nov - 01 Dec 2023 Australia.
Paper/Presentation Title

‘I think most of the teachers go running when they see me’: The perceptions parents of dyslexic children on barriers to meaningful parent-school partnerships in Australia

Presentation TypePresentation
AuthorsLeslie, Rachel
Number of Pages1
Year2023
Place of PublicationAustralia
Web Address (URL) of Paperhttps://www.xcdsystem.com/aare/program/PJRPyvc/index.cfm?pgid=2998
Web Address (URL) of Conference Proceedingshttps://www.aareconference.com.au/program-3/
Conference/EventAustralian Association for Research in Education (AARE) 2023 Annual Conference
Event Details
Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE) 2023 Annual Conference
Parent
Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE)
Delivery
In person
Event Date
27 Nov 2023 to end of 01 Dec 2023
Event Location
Melbourne, Australia
Event Venue
Melbourne University
Abstract

The relationship between schools and parents has evolved over recent years and is now recognised as a valuable and bi-directional partnership in the educative process. Positive parent-school partnerships have the power to influence not only academic outcomes for students, but social and emotional well-being too. This partnership between parents and educators is of particular significance for parents of a disabled child, playing a vital role in ensuring success within the school and beyond.

In Australia there are numerous Federal and state policies and guidelines that require educators to engage in productive collaborative activities with parents based on mutual trust respect. There is also an emphasis placed on shared responsibility between parents and educators for the decision making to support the educational outcomes of the child. Further to this, demonstrating responsive communication and developing opportunities for parents to be involved in their child’s learning are requirements of the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers. While current literature has considered how these policy aspirations are realised for parents with able-bodied and neurotypical children, there is scant research on whether or not parents of neurodiverse children, such as dyslexic children, experience similar positive parent-school partnerships.

Using a unique conceptual lens of parental allyship, this paper reports on an investigation that employed semi-structured interviews to investigate the experiences of 10 Australian parents of dyslexic children and the actions they undertook to meet their child’s needs within the school. Using qualitative content analysis, we explored the nature and impact of these experiences on both the parents and the parent-school partnership. Findings indicate that parents develop a level of expertise in their allyship to their child and this expertise is not always welcomed by the school. In addition, parents perceived interpersonal and systemic barriers that hindered both the parent-school partnership and the support provided to their dyslexic child. The paper contributes unique insights into the perspectives of parents of how parent-school policy is enacted at a school level, and raises consideration for a greater focus on parent-school partnerships for the future educational success of dyslexic children.

ANZSRC Field of Research 2020399999. Other education not elsewhere classified
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Byline AffiliationsUniversity of Southern Queensland
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