Negotiating Meaning: How Spanish-Speaking Mothers Make Sense of the Construct of Parental Involvement
Sebolt, Stephanie Ann Doswald
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Parental involvement has been at the forefront of many studies leading to the conclusion that increased parental involvement improves academic achievement. Despite findings suggesting the benefits of parental involvement, research reveals a lack of parental involvement among Spanish-speaking parents. The overarching objective of this qualitative case study was to explore how Spanish-speaking mothers make sense of the construct of parental involvement. This qualitative study was comprised of three cases: one Guatemalan mother and two Honduran mothers each with children attending elementary school. My methodology allowed me to explore and depict historical and sociocultural factors that influence how the mothers view their role in their childrenâ s education. I collected data through semi-structured interviews, informal observations, and extensive fieldnotes and I conducted on-going analysis on these data. Data provide evidence that the mothers in the study hold a different perspective of parental involvement from that of school personnel. Their views stem directly from their own historical and cultural knowledge, which differs from that of middle-class, White Americans. They are involved in their childrenâ s overall education in ways not acknowledged by educators.
- Doctoral Dissertations