|BCEdAccess, BC Parents of Complex Kids, Family Support Institute of BC and Inclusion BC have collaborated again on a survey to collect feedback from families and their children and youth with disabilities and who have extra support needs, to provide decision-makers in K-12 education with up to date information and evidence to inform actions and accountability. |
1102 parents and guardians AND 192 students responded.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Survey: parents of students with special needs concerned about return to school
Families need flexibility and clear communication
|New Westminster, B.C., (August 18, 2020) – A recent survey report has reinforced the need to prioritize vulnerable students during the pandemic. Families and students who require extra support responded to the survey and expressed the need for proactive communication, flexibility, student involvement and adequate support from schools and the Ministry of Education.|
Over two and a half days, 1102 B.C. parents and guardians of children and youth with disabilities/extra support needs responded to the short survey, which was created in response to the Government of BC’s new announcement of the K-12 Education Restart Plan. 192 students also responded to the survey.
When schools re-opened in June, we saw large gaps as the education system struggled and often failed to meet the needs of families equitably within the new learning environment. Students with extra learning needs fell further behind and many families were driven into crisis.
“When I see that 649 respondents to the survey are considering a different option from public, in person school, I feel concerned that families are feeling forced out,” says Tracy Humphreys, founder and Chair, BCEdAccess Society. “The loss of so many students with disabilities is a loss of great diversity and strength in the public education system.”
“This survey has highlighted the need for flexibility, options and choice for students and families.” says Angela Clancy, Executive Director of the Family Support Institute of British Columbia. “Families need to have confidence in the restart plan. They need regular and fulsome communication from the ministry to ensure their kids will be safe and have access to a robust and supported Inclusive Education.”
“Hopefully the results of this survey, combined with what we learned in June, will help us start the school year right, ensuring that all students have equitable access to a quality education,” says Karla Verschoor, Executive Director of Inclusion BC.