Indicators of successful inclusion of a learner who is deaf in a mainstream class

Collair, Lynette Jennifer (2001-03)

Thesis (MEd)--University of Stellenbosch, 2001.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Internationally, the right of people with disabilities to participate as full members of society presently receives high priority and inclusive education is one way of facilitating participation. With South Africa firmly committed to a rights culture, it is a matter of time before inclusive education is implemented as policy. Since the education of the deaf presents its own challenges, questions abound around the inclusion of learners who are deaf in mainstream classes. This study seeks to explore the implications of the education of a learner who is deaf in a mainstream class and to explore the factors that facilitate learning in such a setting. An eco-systemic approach underpins the study. Both intrinsic and extrinsic factors in reciprocal interaction influence the learning of the deaf in mainstream classes. Several of these factors are explored in the international literature. Against this background, this study sets out to examine some of the factors mentioned in the literature as well as additional factors within the context of a rural South African school. A single learner who is deaf within the context of the family and education system was chosen as the focus of a qualitative, case study. Data were gathered through semi-structured interviews, field notes and a review of personal records. Interviews were held with educators, the principal, a support educator, the learner and the learner's mother. The data were analysed using aspects of content analysis and five patterns emerged. These were child related factors, family factors, school factors, support and factors pertaining to the education department. The findings indicated that the parameters of deafness which facilitated the leamer's success in the mainstream were a mixed hearing loss which benefited from hearing aids to the extent that the learner was able to access the curriculum by means of verbal communication with some compensatory behaviours and learning support. A positive attitude on the part of the school and a willingness to support him as well as good social integration were school-related factors that facilitated inclusion. Achievement enhancing factors despite poor socio-economic conditions were family-related factors that facilitated learning. Intensive early intervention formed a good foundation and continued to be of benefit. Several factors which could be improved were identified and recommendations were made. Since the impact of deafness differs from learner to leamer, each learner's needs has to be considered individually and placement decisions in one of a range of supportive settings be matched against this need.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Dowe onderrig bied eie uitdagings. Internasionaal ontvang die reg van persone met gestremdhede om as volwaardige lede in die gemeenskap opgeneem te word, hoë prioriteit. Inklusiewe onderwys is een manier waarop insluiting en deelname in die gemeenskap vergemaklik kan word. Met die beoogde implementering van 'n beleid van inklusiewe onderwys in Suid-Afrika ontstaan daar vrae rondom die insluiting van leerders wat doof is in hoofstroom klasse. Hierdie studie poog om die implikasies wat onderrig van 'n leerder wat doof is in 'n hoofstroom klas inhou, te ondersoek. Die faktore wat leer in so 'n omgewing vergemaklik, is ook ondersoek. 'n Eko-sistemiese benadering is in die studie gebruik. 'n Enkele leerder wat doof is, is binne die konteks van sy familie en die onderwyssisteem gekies as onderwerp van 'n kwalitatiewe gevallestudie. Beide intrinsieke en ekstrinsieke faktore in wedersydse kommunikasie, beïnvloed die leer van dowe persone. In internasionale literatuur het faktore soos die aard van die doofheid, persoonlikheid, intellektuele funksionering, sosiale integrasie en skool- en familie verwante faktore aandag geniet en daar is bevind dat dit 'n impak op die leerder se sukses binne 'n inklusiewe leeromgewing het. Teen hierdie agtergrond is hierdie studie geloods om bogenoemde faktore en faktore uniek aan die situasie binne die konteks van 'n landelike Suid-Afrikaanse skool te ondersoek. Semi-gestruktureerde onderhoude IS gevoer met opvoeders, die skoolhoof, 'n leerondersteuningsopvoeder, die leerder en sy ouers. Veldnotas en In oorsig van persoonlike verslae is ook gebruik om inligting oor die leerder en die onderrig en leerproses te bekom. Die data is geanaliseer deur gebruik te maak van aspekte van inhoud analisering. Vyf patrone het na vore gekom, naamlik intrinsieke kindverwante faktore, familiefaktore, skoolverwante faktore, faktore rakende ondersteuning en faktore rakende die onderwysdepartement. Die bevindinge dui daarop dat Inleerder met 'n gehoorverlies wat deur 'n gehoorapparaat in staat gestel word om verbale kommunikasie te volg binne 'n leeromgewing waar daar die nodige ondersteuning is, groter sukses behaal. 'n Positiewe houding teenoor die leerder, 'n bereidwilligheid van opvoeders om die leerder te ondersteun en goeie sosiale integrasie is skoolverwante faktore wat insluiting vergemaklik. Familieverwante faktore wat leer aanmoeding lei tot verhoogde prestasies ten spyte van lae sosioekonomiese omstandighede. Intensiewe vroeë intervensies lê In goeie grondslag en lei tot langtermyn positiewe gevolge. Verskeie faktore waar daar ruimte VIT verbeteringe is, is geïdentifiseer en aanbevelings is gemaak. Terwyl sekere faktore in hierdie ondersoek geïdentifiseer is as kritiek in die fasilitering van leer in 'n inklusiewe omgewing, moet daarmee rekening gehou word dat die unieke interaksie van 'n ander stel intrinsieke veranderlikes en ekstrinsieke veranderlikes 'n ander stel kritieke faktore kan produseer. Die behoeftes van elke leerder wat doof is, sal dus op 'n individuele basis in ag geneem moet word sodat plasing binne die ondersteunende omgewing wat die beste in sy behoeftes voorsien, gedoen kan word.

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