Marlys Hickox

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)


Graduate Education

First Advisor

Pat Kornelis


Since the inception of Public Law 94-142 (the Education for All Handicapped Children Act of 1975), students with disabilities have gained access to regular education classrooms. Educating students with disabilities has changed significantly. Much discussion continues to find the basic fundamentals necessary to determine the best learning environment for students with disabilities. This descriptive paper identifies and examines the four fundamentals within the academic community that are responsible for determining and maintaining the best educational environments for students with disabilities: the parental role, the administrators’ support, the teachers’ attitude and aptitude, and the students’ evaluations. Past research studies are synthesized in this paper to show when children with disabilities will learn best. Research shows that in order to have successful educational environments for students with disabilities, the service delivery team of the Individualized Education Plan must include a school community that works together to provide a full continuum of educational options as required by law. This paper applies research of the four education fundamentals to the Christian school setting. Appendices include the continuum of services and four holistic rubrics that clarify the expectations and assess the four fundamentals of successful educational environments.


Action Research Report Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Education