Perceptions of the hospital school experience: Implications for pedagogy and the use of technology

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
International Journal of Learning, 2013, 20 (1), pp. 9 - 21
Issue Date:
2013-01-01
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© Common Ground, Rachel Perry, Janet Currie, Damian Maher, Rosemary Johnston All Rights Reserved. Whilst many transitions in a child's life are expected - such as that from primary to high school for example - the transition from regular (and presumably a normal school situation) to a hospital school is likely to be unexpected and potentially difficult. Students are often dislocated from their regular schools for extended periods of time, causing serious interruptions to their education. Engaging with four hospital schools in Australia and New Zealand, this research explores pedagogical and technological implications for these hospital school-located students and their teachers. Focusing on the perspective of various stakeholders including selected students, parents/carers and teachers (n=72), findings revealed issues relating to effective collaboration and transition, teacher professional development, as well as the role of technology in connecting educators and students, and reducing student isolation. Future research needs to accommodate the challenges and strengths as experienced by each hospital school, whilst also identifying common issues reported by all stakeholders. We recommend further exploration of the nature and facilitation of stakeholder relationships, professional development of hospital teachers and the fostering of opportunities for the sharing of practice-based stories. Further research addressing the ways in which technology can be used to overcome the hospital student's perceived social isolation is also recommended.
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