Mexican Americans’ Educational Barriers and Progress: Is the Magic Key Within Reach?
Zambrana, Ruth Enid
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This report is based on the edited book The Magic Key: The Educational Journey of Mexican Americans from K–12 to College and Beyond (Zambrana & Hurtado, 2015), which focuses on the experiences of Mexican Americans in education. As the largest of the Latino subgroups with the longest history and the lowest levels of educational attainment in America, this community warrants particular attention. Drawing from an interdisciplinary corpus of work, the authors move beyond the rhetoric of progress and engage intersectional analytic frameworks. This policy brief points out cultural problem-oriented and ethnic focused deficit arguments and provides substantial evidence of structural, institutional and normative racial processes of inequality. New findings are introduced that create more dynamic views of — and new thinking about — Mexican American educational trajectories.