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Title: Mothers' perceptions of working in partnership with early years professionals through a period of transition
Author: Mak, Zanete Tsz Huen
ISNI:       0000 0004 2729 5873
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2012
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What are parents' experiences of support when their children are identified as having social skills needs? This dissertation explores mothers' perception of support for their children during the transition period from preschool into primary education. The research is focused on a small sample of families who were taking part in the Play and Learning to Socialise (PALS) programme. However, it has wider implications as it aims to broaden our understanding of the experience and perception of this group of mothers. They are often the primary carer for their child with identified social difficulties. This study involved the participation of six mothers whose children were in the 'Early Years' of their education. The data was collected in semi- structured interviews and analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA). The results of this research project suggested that although the six mothers were in similar situations, each of them had a unique experience during this transition period of their child's academic experience. This further reminds us that understanding every individual story within their unique social context requires each case to be explored in a holistic way. In general, this research revealed many important aspects of the mothers' experiences and the need for a greater awareness to benefit a more effective 2 parent-staff working partnership. These important aspects include contradictory beliefs about the level of the child's development, emotions aroused during the problem-solving process, feeling of self-doubt about the parents' role and responsibility, and the changes in the relationship with staff between preschool and reception. These can all add to the mothers' negative experiences which are fraught with complex feelings and dilemmas. The findings in this research also highlighted the importance of social inclusion for mothers with young children. Their desire to be socially included can have a major impact on their emotions, social identity, and actions to support their child. This will also affect their preferred style of working partnership with the school staff. The findings of this study raised concern and awareness of the mothers' views and rights during the decision-making process about the young children's needs. It also highlighted the need for further guidance on parent- staff partnership, especially with regard to the responsibilities and expectations which need to be communicated and dealt with according to the different circumstances of each family.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available