Parents' and teachers' perceptions concerning education for children with fetal alcohol syndrome

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Cascegna, Antonietta
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Appropriate educational placement, and the combined supportive efforts of parents and teachers for children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS), may make all the difference in their success. FAS is a permanent birth defect condition due to th effects of alcohol consumed prenatally and many of the children as a result, require special educational services due to significant learning disabilities, emotional, and behavioural difficulties. The current qualitative study consisted of four in depth interviews; one foster parent and one adoptive parent who both have children with Fetid Alcohol Syndrome/Fetal Alcohol Effects, and the two respective educators who teach their children. Findings suggest that parents and teachers report similar behavioural, cognitive, and socio-emotional characteristics for these children as described in the literature (e.g., impulsiveness, and inability to understand of teaching these children practical skills and social skills rather than academics at school. Three parents and I teacher also felt that current educational funding guidelines in Manitoba were not specific enough for children with FAS and as a result, makes it difficult to obtain appropriate supports needed to assist these children at school (e.g., paraprofessional assistance). In addition, very strong themes of advocacy and "goodness of fit" between the home and school were also found.