Factors influencing retention of children with hearing impairment in primary schools in Gulu municipality, Gulu district, Uganda
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This study investigated factors influencing retention of children with hearing impairment in primary schools in Gulu Municipality, Gulu District. Uganda.It sought to assess the provisions at school that influenced retention of children with hearing impairment in primary schools, to find out the parental involvement that influenced the retention of children with hearing impairment in primary schools finally to investigate the school mentorship programs that influenced retention of children with hearing impairment in primary schools. The study comprised of 16 participants where 6 SNE teachers and 10 children with hearing impairment from two (2) primary schools in Gulu Municipality. These respondents were selected through a purposive sampling technique. The data was collected with the help of interview guide and focus group discussion. Pilot study was conducted to validate the instruments before the final data collection and was used to analysed data by identifying themes, coding data, mapping and interpreting qualitatively. The findings indicated that most of the teachers had some training in special needs education. It also showed that there were different modes of teaching children with hearing impairment. There was much to be done for retention of children with hearing impairment in primary schools through provisions at schools like qualified teachers in the use of sign language, the use of visual instructional materials among others, parental involvement like payment of school fees, providing scholastic materials, attending school meetings /visitation days and school mentorship programs like guidance and counselling, co-curricular activities and training in Uganda Sign Language. There is need to guide and counsel the children with hearing impairment to accept themselves and socialise freely with other children.The teachers should be encourage to cater for individual differences of all children regardless of their disabilities.The school administrators should provide enough instructional materials and interpreters in the units to support the children with hearing impairment.There is need to increase awareness among parents to be fully involved in the education of children with hearing impairment as they collaborate with the schools,interact with SNE teachers,payment of school fees,providing food stuff,provision of scholastic materials,taking their CWHI to and from school.The school administrators should increase and improve on many mentorship programs.