Parent perspectives on their toddlers' development: comparison of regular and inclusion childcare

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A growing number of community childcare programs are including children with developmental disabilities. While some studies have explored the effects of inclusion for preschool and school-age children without disabilities, there is little knowledge about inclusion for typically developing toddlers enrolled in such programs or about parent attitudes regarding inclusion. In this study, parent perceptions of the benefits and limitations of their child's toddler program (inclusion or typical) were assessed. Parents from both programs gave comparable responses to a semi-structured survey with regard to changes in their child's development and parental level of satisfaction. Parent feedback from the inclusion childcare program also provided insight into the advantages of an inclusion program. These findings suggest that there is little differentiation between inclusion programs and regular childcare programs in providing a quality experience for all children, but that there may be additional benefits to enrolling children without disabilities into inclusion programs.

Keywords: Inclusion; Parent perceptions; Toddler development

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Children's Hospital and Health Center, 3020 Children's Way MC 5033, San Diego, CA 92123, USA 2: University of California San Diego, USA

Publication date: October 1, 2003

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