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An illuminative process evaluation of a year 7 ‘Primary Ethos’ initiative for vulnerable pupils

Lunham, Claire Louise (2009)
Ap.Ed.&ChildPsy.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Volume 1 presents research into educational approaches for supporting young people at secondary transfer. The volume consists of a critical literature review and an empirical study. The review explores a 'continuity vs discontinuity' debate and examines previous research into the 'Primary Ethos' approach for maintaining continuity at secondary transfer. The review reveals a clear need for further Primary Ethos evaluations which look beyond impact, and which seek to elicit the views of the pupils and other key stakeholders. The empirical study reports on an illuminative process evaluation of a secondary school's Year 7 ‘Foundation Group’ initiative for low attaining pupils. With the evaluation’s primary purpose being to inform initiative development and organisational learning, the RADIO model (Knight and Timmins, 1995) was used. Following the identification of 5 collaboratively negotiated process questions, semi-structured interviews were conducted with pupils, staff and the Head teacher. Data analysis resulted in the identification of 'supportive factor' themes, areas for development, and issues pertinent to the school. The researcher concludes by suggesting that the application of an attachment theory perspective may be useful in providing a framework for future exploration of Primary Ethos initiatives.
Volume 2 presents five independent ‘Professional Practice Reports’. The first paper, 'An account of a Trainee Educational Psychologist’s involvement in a planned change process in an organisation' (Chapter 2), describes how a primary school Head teacher and Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO) were supported with addressing the emotional and psychological implications of an impending change process. The second paper, 'Working with a complex emotion in children and young people: a critique of ‘Anger Management’' (Chapter 3), reflects upon the theoretical perspectives relating to anger and critiques the most common approach to dealing with anger in children and young people: Cognitive Behavioural Anger Management. The third paper, 'A critique of the issues relating to the implementation of a Multi-Agency Social Communication Difficulties (SCD) Assessment Protocol' (Chapter 4), critiques some of the issues surrounding the implementation of a new Multi-Agency Social-Communication Difficulties protocol for primary aged pupils within a Local Authority. The fourth paper, 'Reflections on the work of an Educational Psychology Service’s Critical Incident Response Team (CIRT)’ (Chapter 5), reflects on the work of the CIRT in relation to the literature and research base on critical incident response, crisis intervention and trauma work with schools. Finally, the fifth paper, 'Fostering Inclusion through Circles and Strengths (FITOS): A critique of the process issues relating to the design, implementation and evaluation of a longitudinal pilot project in a primary school' (Chapter 6), critiques the process issues relating to the design, implementation and evaluation of an intervention (FITOS) specifically tailored to address a primary school’s concerns regarding a lack of empathy amongst pupils for pupils with special educational needs.

Type of Work:Ap.Ed.&ChildPsy.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Yeomans, Jane and Cook, Sandi and Pahil, Raj
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
Department:School of Education
Subjects:LB Theory and practice of education
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:444
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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