Parental perceptions of risks with young adults who have severe learning difficulties contrasted with the young people’s views and experiences.

Roy McConkey, Marisa Smyth

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


    The majority of school-leavers over two years from two special schools for pupils with severe learning disabilities were individually interviewed (N=34), as were their parents (N=38). Parental reports stressed the amount of care and supervision required by these young people. They viewed them as vulnerable to various different hazards such as crossing roads and only a minority are prepared to take the risk of teaching them. However more of the young people felt they were capable of certain tasks. Parents had a particular fear that their son or daughter may be taken advantage of sexually even though the bigger risk - going by the young people’s reports - is verbal abuse and bullying from peers. A model is proposed of the influences on parental assessments of risks. This might be used in arriving at ‘shared risk-taking’ strategies with professionals and the young people during the later years of schooling
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)18-31
    JournalChildren & Society
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2003


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