Date of Award

7-1-1982

Degree Type

Thesis

University or Center

Atlanta University (AU)

School

School of Education

Degree Name

Ed.S.

Abstract

Purpose

This study was designed to identify the expressed attitudes of middle school teachers toward mainstreaming handicapped children into the regular classroom. Four null hypotheses were tested as a result of this study. These hypotheses were based on the variables of academic costs and socio-emotional costs of segregation, sex, age range and years of experience as a teacher. These variables were used to determine if there were factors which influence middle school teachers' attitudes toward mainstreaming the handicapped.

Method

A descriptive survey method was used in this study. The data were collected from the Mainstreaming Questionnaire, developed by Dr. Liora Schmelkin, Assistant Professor, Department of Counseling, Psychology and Research in Education at Hofstra University, Hempstead, New York. A total of forty-five subjects responded. The data were analyzed and the t test was used to determine if the differences in the teachers' scores were statistically significant. The statistical significance was measured at the .05 level.

Findings

The findings of this study indicated that there was a significant difference in the expressed attitudes of middle school teachers toward mainstreaming handicapped children based on academic costs and socio-emotional costs of segregation. Teachers were positive toward academic costs and negative toward socio-emotional costs.

The findings also indicated that there was no significant difference at the .05 level in the expressed attitudes of middle school teachers toward mainstreaming handicapped children based on the sex, age range and years of experience of the teachers. Three of the null hypotheses delineated and tested in this study were accepted.

Conclusions

The findings of this study gave bases for the following conclusions:

1. Middle school teachers' attitudes are positive toward academic costs and negative toward socio-emotional costs of segregation in mainstreaming handicapped youngsters.

2. The sex of a middle school teacher does not impact upon one's attitude toward the mainstreaming of handicapped youngsters into regular classes.

3. The age range of middle school teachers does not affect one's attitude toward the main- streaming of handicapped youngsters into regular classes.

4. The years of experience as a teacher does not affect one's attitude toward the main- streaming of handicapped youngsters into regular classes.

Implications

The findings and conclusions implied that certain factors impact upon one's attitude in determining positiveness or negativeness toward mainstreaming handicapped children into regular classes. The findings and conclusions also implied that sex, age range and years of experience as a teacher does not affect one's attitude.

Recommendations

The findings, conclusions and implications gave bases for the following recommendations:

1. Studies which assess teacher attitudes toward mainstreaming should be conducted at the middle school level.

2. This study should be replicated using a larger sample and additional variables such as grade level of teacher, race, etc.

3. The findings of this study should be disseminated to school systems, research journals and parties involved in mainstreaming handicapped children into regular classes.

4. Specific inservice training should be pro- vided to middle school teachers dealing with variables that would help to increase positiveness toward socio-emotional costs of segregation of mainstreaming handicapped children.

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