“Trying to stay afloat”: Education professionals’ perspectives on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on children with special educational needs and disabilities"

Emma Ashworth*, LUCY BRAY, Amel Alghari, Joanna Kirkby

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

Abstract

This study aimed to investigate the experiences of education professionals in their efforts to provide education and support to children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and to gain insights into the perceived repercussions of pandemic-related restrictions on the educational development and overall wellbeing of these children. Mixed-methods surveys (N=100) and semi-structured qualitative interviews (N=6) were utilised. Data were analysed using descriptive statistics and thematic analysis. Findings indicate substantial challenges faced by education professionals in delivering appropriate and effective education and wellbeing support to children with SEND during periods of school ‘closures’, resulting in hindered academic progression and adverse impacts on the wellbeing of children with SEND, their families, and the education professionals themselves. It is vital that effective support strategies and appropriate training are implemented, in addition to further research to establish what would be most beneficial for all teachers, and particularly those supporting children with SEND.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Research in Special Educational Needs
Early online date30 Jan 2024
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jan 2024

Keywords

  • special educational needs
  • COVID-19
  • children’s rights
  • special education
  • teachers
  • mixed-methods

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