An investigative study of a Dubai-based private mainstream school in meeting the educational needs of its primary students with social, emotional, and behavioral difficulties (SEBD)
The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
The purpose of this study was to investigate the practice of a Dubai-based private mainstream school in meeting the educational needs of its primary students (grades 1 to 4) exhibiting social, emotional, and behavioral difficulties (SEBD). The researcher used a qualitative approach centered on observations, interviews, questionnaire-based survey, focus group, and document analysis. The study examined the school’s policies and guidelines, and SEBD identification and assessment procedures. The research covered also the curriculum and extracurricular activities offered, and the student placement and in-class support. The teachers’ professional development and training were equally investigated with respect to SEBD. The findings showed that SEBD occupy considerable time and effort of the administrators and the teachers, but the lack of a clear and consistent system of identification and provision for students with SEBD makes it hard to meet their needs. Within a school community that hosts culturally diverse staff and student bodies, there is a misunderstanding and confusion on how to define, diagnose and deal with SEBD-related behaviors. A set of recommendations were suggested to provide SEBD effective practice that can be applied by the Ministry of Education in the UAE, the investigated school, and within the classroom respectively. It is hoped that this study adds to the existing mass of research focusing on Special Educational Needs in the UAE, and opens the door for more systematic SEBD investigations in the future.
DISSERTATION WITH DISTINCTION
private school, Dubai, educational needs, primary students, social, emotional, and behavioral difficulties (SEBD), professional development, primary mainstream school, effective practice, United Arab Emirates (UAE)