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Title: Exploring the educational experiences of children and young people adopted from care : using the voices of children and parents to inform practice
Author: Best, Rebecca Katherine
ISNI:       0000 0004 8500 3808
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2019
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National monitoring data suggests that adopted children achieve poorer educational outcomes than the general population. Research has found that adopted children can experience significant emotional, social and learning difficulties in school. These needs are often attributed to the adverse early experiences endured by many adopted children prior to their adoptions. Few studies have elicited the perspectives of adopted children and adoptive parents in relation to school. The current study used a qualitative design to explore the lived, educational experiences of adopted children. Phase 1 investigated the difficulties experienced by adopted children in school and supportive factors which contribute to positive educational experiences, through semi-structured interviews with 11 secondary-aged adoptees and a focus group with six adopters. Thematic analysis identified five themes within the narratives of the study-adoptees and study-adopters: Inner Turmoil; Social Disconnection; Unsupportive School Contexts; Relational Repair; and Misperceptions and Prejudice. In phase 2, the findings from phase 1 were presented to 20 Designated Teachers within a workshop to explore how the voices of the study-adoptees and study-adopters can be used to inform their role. Three themes were found, which illustrate broad implications for Designated Teachers' practice with adopted children and adoptive parents in schools: Raising Awareness, Developing Relationships and Supporting Emotional Needs. The findings from the study are contextualised within Bronfenbrenner's (2005) Bioecological Theory of Human Development. Implications are identified for schools, Educational Psychology Services, policy makers and researchers.
Supervisor: Cameron, C. ; Hill, V. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available