Although children’s adaptive social and emotional development and academic performance/achievement are important indicators of school effectiveness, considerably less studies have been taken with a special focus on these social, emotional and academic gains among children with disabilities, particularly those integrated in regular classroom. From both perspectives of children with disabilities and parents of these children, this study tested and compared the patterns of the predictive effects of perceived social and emotional competences on academic performance between their perceptions. In total 307 children with disabilities and parents of these children (parents N = 180; children N =127) participated in this study. These children are integrated in mainstreaming primary schools (p1 to p3) in Hong Kong. An interesting finding was emotional competence was the stronger predictor of children’s academic performance compare to social competence. The predictive patterns were consistent based on the results from parents’ and children’s self-reported data (i.e., path coefficients from social and emotional competences to academic performance: β =.37 and β =.28 based on children’s data; β =.37 and β =.25 based on parents’ data, all path coefficients are significant at the .01 level). Similarly, in the results from both parents and children, we found that around 30% variance of academic performance could be explained by social and emotional competences as two predictors. These findings indicated not only a pivotal role of social and emotional competences, but also a more salient role of emotional competence in academic performance of children with disabilities. Both theoretical implications to emotion research in early childhood education and empirical implications to call for school support and practices to foster emotional competence of children with disabilities are discussed.
|Publication status||Published - Jun 2015|