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Parenting for a Digital FutureHow Hopes and Fears about Technology Shape Children's Lives$
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Sonia Livingstone and Alicia Blum-Ross

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780190874698

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190874698.001.0001

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(p.117) 5 (Dis)abilities
Parenting for a Digital Future

Della Rocca

Oxford University Press

Parents of children with special education needs and disabilities (SEN) often experience an intensified struggle to balance the risks of digital technologies while also embracing the opportunities. This chapter argues that, rather than being the exception, these families illustrate the dilemmas of the digital age felt in varying degrees by many families. For families with children with special education needs and disabilities, these dilemmas, we argue, are heightened given parents’ efforts to chart individualized pathways under conditions of significant uncertainty and reduced structural support. Digital technologies, in short, seem to suggest a potential path toward a socially sanctioned and innovative future, along with some creative workarounds to resolve a lack of domestic resources or capacity. However, the hopes raised by digital technologies for some of the families discussed in this chapter may be unrealized, and do not substitute for provision of better state services.

Keywords:   digital parenting practices, special educational needs, disability, special technology affinity, uncertainty, false promises

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