Date Published: Jul 31, 2008
Journal of Educational & Psychological Consultation
Mueller, T. G., Singer, G. H. S., & Draper, L. M.
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Parental dissatisfaction with special education services is a national problem. This article presents two districts that have undergone systemwide changes to decrease the dissatisfaction of families who have children with disabilities. Using qualitative inquiry, the authors analyzed documents and observed and interviewed 24 informants about the system problems and changes. Data analysis revealed three themes within the systems problems category: (a) lack of leadership, (b) not keeping up with the law, and (c) parents excluded. Systemwide changes were organized into seven themes: (a) new leadership, (b) partnerships, (c) creative use of resources, (d) updated educational practices, (e) relationship building, (f) teacher and parent support, and (g) alternative dispute resolution. Findings revealed effective leaders who focused on all levels of the system. (Abstract from author)