The challenges presented when parents become involved in official plans for their children

The purpose of this article is to examine parental influence and participation in respect of the support provided to children with disabilities who have individual plans (IP) in preschool. A theoretical approach based on “argumentative”, power-free and respectful communication is presented. Findings from interviews with participants in the IP teams of two preschool children indicate that the requirement for parents to prepare themselves for meetings poses a challenge. The need for respect and power neutrality is challenged when the municipality’s representative conveys private information about the families without their permission, and when professionals in the two cases fail to fulfill their professional responsibilities.

Keywords: service user participation, preschool, kindergarten, individual plan, deliberation