Transition Services From School to Work for Students who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing in Saudi Arabia: Teachers’ Perceptions
The purpose of the present study was to examine teachers’ perceptions of the transition services from school to the work force for students who are Deaf or hard of hearing (D/hh) in Saudi Arabia. The importance of this study was to gain a better understanding of the perceptions of teachers with the objective of identifying the implications and practices for vocational training related to post school success. The study investigated how teachers of students who are D/hh perceive their readiness and preparation to plan and implement transition services, what challenges they may encounter while they plan and implement such services, and the work opportunities that students who are D/hh may have after receiving the transition services. The study also examined the impact of the teaching environment, years of teaching experience, educational background, grade levels taught, and family experiences with disability on the teachers’ perceptions of the issues under study. Also owing to the educational achievement issues and transitional challenges faced by students who are D/hh, this study expanded the existing knowledge and contributed to successful formulation of transition
services by disability service providers so they could design programs and effectively support students who are D/hh. Such programs and support should aim to increase the employment rate or transition to employment not only in Saudi Arabia, but also within the Middle East region. The study found that teachers in Saudi Arabia have low perceptions with regard to transition services. The same low perceptions were found with regard to the teachers’ opinions as to their own preparedness to plan and implement transition services for students who are D/hh. A similar low awareness and hence, perception, was found with regard to implementation challenges associated with transition services. . Furthermore, the individual characteristics of teachers such as years of teaching experience, educational background, grade levels taught, and family experiences with disability, did not affect their low perceptions towards school-based transition services. Challenges and barriers highlighted and findings offered recommendations and suggestions for policy makers and researchers.