Harnessing abilities and talents: parents’ perspectives on responsive inclusive early childhood education

Victoria I. Puig, Tara L. Evenson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Research endorses accessing the insights of parents whose children have attended inclusive programs as requisite for the continued expansion and evaluation of inclusive education. In this study, researchers follow up with parents of children with disabilities who had attended a university-based inclusive preschool program. It draws on research and theory from both the Early Childhood Education and Inclusive Education disciplines. Through semi-structured interviews parents share their family’s educational stories and reflect on how their understandings of inclusion have continued to evolve over time. Participants describe what was meaningful about their child’s early childhood inclusive education experiences, how they made decisions about their children’s ongoing educational services and settings, and the ways philosophies and practice sometimes clashed. Findings include the importance parents place on reciprocal partnerships with professionals, how they carry professionals’ words with them, and what they value most about inclusive education. Recommendations for practice and teacher preparation are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-91
Number of pages17
JournalEuropean Early Childhood Education Research Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2023


  • Early childhood education
  • disabilities studies
  • inclusive early childhood education
  • inclusive education
  • parent and professional collaboration
  • partnerships with families


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