Physical Education for Students with Spina Bifida: Mothers’ Perspectives

in Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly
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This study described the meaning 7 mothers of children with spina bifida ascribed to their children’s physical education, the mothers’ roles in the schools, and the importance of the IEP in home and school communication. The stories of 4 mothers of elementary and 3 mothers of secondary aged children were gathered using the phenomenological methods of semistructured interviews, artifacts, and field notes. The thematic analysis revealed three themes: a good thing but …, connection to sports, and beyond the curriculum. The mothers valued their children’s participation in physical education and provided instrumental support to teachers and teaching associates. They also valued sport as an avenue for developing sport specific skills, which in turn enriched the school experience. The findings are discussed within the context of Peters’ (1996) model of disablement.

Jihoun An is now with the Department of Sport and Exercise Education at The Ohio State University; Donna L. Goodwin is now at The University of Alberta, Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation. Edmonton, AB Canada. E-mail: donna.goodwin@ualberta.ca.

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