Hospital assessments of children with learning problems: Perspectives from special education administrators and hospital evaluators

Ludwig Von Hahn, Caroline Linse, Janet Hafler*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background. - The schooling of 1 of every 8 children is influenced by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). The IDEA also governs, to a degree, the relationship between interdisciplinary hospital clinics that evaluate many of these children and the schools that provide educational services. Little is known about how this relationship functions or how educational personnel perceive reports from hospital settings. Objectives. - To describe special education administrator and hospital evaluator perspectives on hospital assessments of children with learning problems. Methods.-A survey of attendees at a 1998 meeting of the Massachusetts Association of Special Education Administrators was conducted by use of a questionnaire using closed and open-ended questions. Subsequently, focus groups were held with hospital evaluators. Results. - Special education administrators describe a high level of frustration with hospital-school relations. They state that hospital reports do not meet the needs of children in the educational setting. They seek closer collaboration with medical evaluators. Evaluators working in hospital settings acknowledge frustration perceived by school personnel. They state that communication with educational personnel improves the quality of their reports and outcomes for the child. Conclusions. - Hospital assessments of children with learning problems are associated with high levels of frustration among special education administrators. These assessments might be made more useful if careful attention were paid to the needs of educators. Greater communication between hospital evaluators and school personnel may increase the usefulness of hospital clinic assessments of children with learning problems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-16
Number of pages6
JournalAmbulatory Pediatrics
Volume2
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jan 2002
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Children with disabilities
  • Developmental-behavioral pediatrics
  • Interinstitutional collaboration
  • Quality improvement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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