The subjective importance of children’s participation rights: A discrimination perspective.

This study examined how children appraise the importance of their participation rights–that is, the right to express their views and the right to be heard–and whether such appraisals vary as a function of perceived discrimination in the school environment. The sample comprised 1,006 children (9.6—14.3 years of age; 51% boys) from 14 public primary schools in Geneva, Switzerland. Results indicate that a majority of children considered their participation rights as very important. Children’s appraisals of these rights varied marginally between classes and schools. Moreover, children’s individual-level appraisals were sensitive to their perceptions of discrimination in the school environment, in that higher levels of perceived discrimination were associated with a greater subjective importance attached to participation rights. This suggests that appropriate measures must be taken to implement participation rights in such a manner that all children–including those who feel discriminated against–will be protected by, and fully able to enjoy, their participation rights. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2019 APA, all rights reserved)