Teachers’ Perspectives of Peer Acceptance of Children with Communication Difficulties in A Mainstream Primary school.
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The present study investigated teacher’s perceptions of peer acceptance of children with communication difficulties by their typically developing peers in a mainstream primary school. This research was qualitative in nature, consisting of five female participants in employment at the same primary school and interviews were analysed using a thematic analysis. Participants expressed their perception of students initially being accepting of all of their peers regardless of their additional educational needs. The findings further suggest peer acceptance diminishes over extended periods of time as the developmental gap broadens. Participants also expressed their perceptions of peer education being an important aspect of promoting peer acceptance as well as suggesting the need for additional staff training and education. The present study demonstrates the potential positive effects of early introduction of children with communication difficulties into the mainstream educational environment on peer acceptance.
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