Date of Award

January 2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Kristen Votava


Parental engagement is an essential element in the social-emotional and academic achievement of students. However, barriers to this involvement continue to exist. Barriers may take many forms including time, school and staff perceptions and bias, power dynamic, communication with teachers, curriculum, and differences in language and culture. Barriers to parent engagement are typically increased for parents of children with special education needs. Therefore, it is the responsibility of school staff to identify barriers that may exist for families and help them to develop solutions to overcome those barriers. This quantitative study investigated possible barriers to home-based parent involvement in Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) classrooms using the Hoover-Dempsey Model of Family Involvement as a framework. Data was collected by surveying parents of three to five-year-old children receiving services in six Early Childhood Special Education classrooms within the Grand Forks Public Schools District. Findings of the study indicated that time, energy, and subject knowledge were identified as the most frequent barriers to home-based involvement experienced by parents and caregivers of children enrolled in the ECSE program. These findings indicated that parents’ decisions to become involved were affected by their perceived life context which aligned with the HD-S model level 1. Additional findings indicated that teachers were not providing parents with suggestions for educational activities that were representative of their home culture. Based on this information, a solution was developed to help families overcome these barriers to home-based family involvement.