Inclusive education and deaf families

There appears to be a trend of deaf parents with larger deaf family networks in Western countries deciding to choose a regular educational setting for their deaf child, with or without the provision of sign language interpreters, and various technological accommodations. This project focuses on deaf parents’ narratives to justify their child’s placement in a regular school.


We explore how the educational choices parents made for their children are influenced (1) by their own knowledge of and lived experience with the educational choices available, (2) various kinds of capital parents possess and (3) actually existing resources in their country.


  • A holistic view on the linguistic, educational and social needs of deaf learners
  • Problematizing the superficial discourse of ‘special’ vs. ‘inclusive’ education – reality is much more complex
  • A better understanding of the motives of deaf parents to choose a regular school for their children, leading to policy guidelines to develop inclusive education based on this holistic assessment of deaf children’s needs, in line with international guidelines and legislation on inclusive education


Data are currently being collected through interviews with deaf parents with deaf children in Belgium, Finland, the UK and Norway..

HU researchers involved in the research

  • Maartje De Meulder
    • Teacher-researcher
    • Research groups: Speech and Language Therapy: Participation through communication

Collaboration with knowledge partners