Parent Participation: Improving services for disabled children


    Council for Disabled Children and Contact a

    ISBN 1874715606, £15

    Star Rating: 5/5

    I am sure many practitioners have read about parent
    participation and often thought – “sounds great, but how?”
    Well, these guides – one for parents, the other for
    professionals – actually address the “but how?” question in a
    comprehensive and highly practical manner, Both specify potential
    challenges and provide practical checklists on ensuring that
    participation works. Crucially, they do this without going into
    unnecessary detail.

    The professionals’ guide identifies four key principles
    for successful participation. What is especially good about this
    section is that each approach is defined alongside practical
    examples from parents and practitioners.

    There are also exercises to provoke debate among professionals.
    I can vouch for their efficacy in encouraging ideas about how to
    meaningfully start participation work, having used these with a
    number of colleagues.

    The authors state their objective is to provide a tool to
    support work with parents. Have they succeeded? I believe so.

    Kirstie Newson is a project development worker, Children
    with Disabilities Pathfinder Trust, Ealing, west

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