The present study reports on the effectiveness at one-year follow-up of an after-school prevention program targeting 6(th) grade African American youth residing in high-risk urban areas. The program, conducted on-site over the school-year period, involved a group mentoring approach emphasizing remedial education and an appreciation of African American cultural heritage in promoting school bonding, social skills development, and greater academic achievement. Behavioral and adjustment outcome data were obtained from two participating middle-school sites (intervention and comparison, involving 237 and 241 students, respectively) serving essentially equivalent urban communities. Results of the study revealed significant effects for academic achievement and behavior in terms of grade point average and teacher ratings that favored students at the intervention site. At this site, greater participation of parents in the intervention program was found to be positively related to improvement of the children in grade point average. No differential site-related changes in negative behavior were observed.
Reports on a study in Miami in which only 9018 of an estimated 11,725 6-17 yr. old school children could be accounted for educationally. Special analyses revealed that school absence was more heavily concentrated in children from mobile homes, but that it was prevalent among stable ones also. It is inferred that the "invisibility" of the adult male begins with nonenrolled school children and that there is a missing male-missing child-missing male cycle. The educational system is too financially burdened to search out the children. It is concluded that the "deficit" of males in slum areas is really an underenumeration which reflects a pattern induced at an early age by the educational system. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Reviews experiences from the science curricula developed by the National Science Foundation in the 1950s and 1960s for their relevance to national standard-setting efforts today. Experiences include choosing standards of success that fit available expertise, emphasizing professional development, and defining the target audience clearly. (SLD)
Discusses effects of federal educational funding on procedural changes, structural changes, personnel opportunities, and student access at local levels since 1965. Suggests that federal programs have had the most pervasive impact on minority group education and that impacts have been greater than the percentage of federal dollars allocated to education. (Author/MJL)
Reviews recent demographic changes in the United States and projections for the future. Suggests that the response to the new diversity can emphasize either assimilation or cultural pluralism and cultural transformation. Introduces eight articles in which anthropologists take a strong position in favor of the latter course. (EVL)
Hypothesizes that a student assignment plan, such as that approved for Boston (Massachusetts), can be an effective method of using school choice to achieve both educational quality and racial balance. Urges the federal government to increase funds for demonstration planning projects and comparative studies to test the plan's effectiveness. (FMW)
Students are more racially segregated in schools today than they were in the late 1960s and prior to the enforcement of court-ordered desegregation in school districts across the country. This special issue addresses the overarching theme of policies, practices, or roles and responsibilities of various stakeholders that may directly or indirectly contribute to this new generation of school segregation commonly known as resegregation. I begin this special issue with a brief discussion of the legal milieu that helped set the stage for resegregation and explain why collecting social science evidence may be useful in addressing the resegregation problem in schools.
Considers changes that will have to take place in teacher education due to rising numbers of minority students in public schools, the declining number of families with children in public schools, and the increasingly prevalent view that education is a personal rather than common good. (GC)
An overview of educational policies toward language-minority students from 1960 to the present indicates how often they have been ignored. The new national standards movement, America 2000, is no exception. The effects that this initiative might have on the education of language-minority students are explored. (SLD)
Urban schools have historically struggled to create engaging learning environments for students. One of the emerging answers to this educational conundrum is the development of more personalized learning environments. Such environments draw on the natural interests of students but contextualize those interests within demanding academic structures. This article describes the historical context confronting urban educators and one of the emerging solutions: early colleges.
Describes a mathematics education research project conducted among seventh graders with the goal of identifying important processes, skills, and understandings needed by students to use mathematical ideas in everyday situations. Discusses information utilization skills required for solving a written problem containing extensive verbal and numerical data. (GC)
Presents narrative accounts of the meaning of work and love for two Latino community youth activists, exploring how Latino community development in the city has given meaning to the lives of these youths and their families, neighbors, and other young people. The educational implications of their stories are discussed. (SLD)
Uses data drawn from a longitudinal study to examine the several viewpoints from which the degree of success (as measured by absorption and integration) a minority group family will have after deciding to leave an agricultural or migrant economy may be considered. (Author/JM)
Illustrates how the combined use of qualitative and quantitative methods were necessary in obtaining a clearer understanding of the process of incest in American society. Argues that the exclusive use of one methodology would have obscured important information. (FMW)
Indicates that most principals and teachers interviewed in 16 school districts in Massachusetts agreed that performance evaluations should be part of the reduction in force (RIF) process. Examines performance assessments currently being done in selected districts. (MJL)
Discusses the following aspects of child abuse laws and the policies derived from them: (1) vagueness of the laws; (2) implications for school policy and liability; (3) staff training requirements; (4) confidentiality; (5) protection teams; (6) abuse by school staff; (7) corporal punishment as abuse; and (8) prevention programing. (JS)
Discusses the role of school principals and school boards in developing policies in the following areas in order to inform faculty members of their duty to report suspected cases of abuse: (1) child-abuse reporting procedures; (2) educational and training programs; and (3) community linkage mechanisms. (JS)
Reviews efforts to prevent sexual abuse of children. Discusses the nature of sexual abuse and what an understanding of that nature implies for programs to prevent sexual abuse of children. Summarizes the research on sexual abuse prevention programs. Outlines major policy implications of this research. (JS)
Summarizes what research has revealed about Latino educational experiences and discusses the range and shift in responses over time that Latinos have made in their accommodations to education in the United States. Future directions for research are suggested. (GR)
This meta-analysis of 22 studies examines the relationship between phonics and the academic achievement of urban minority elementary school children. Further analyses distinguish between those studies that are of higher quality than the others and those studies that examine all minority students and mostly minority students. Results indicate a significant relationship between phonics instruction and higher academic achievement. Phonics instruction, as a whole, is associated with academic variables by about .23 to .33 of a standard deviation unit. This relationship holds for studies that examine all minority students and those that include mostly minority students. The results also hold for higher quality studies. The significance of these results is discussed.
Critiques a collection of articles on accountability, testing, and academics in schools with minority group and low-income students, examining their polar positions and explaining that polar positions are often equally biased. Expresses concerns about the TAAS, discussing what changes are needed in the educational system and the TAAS in order for it to be fair and serve its purpose. (SM)
Results from an exploratory evaluation of the Indiana Principals' Leadership Academy (IPLA) over its first four years are reported. Interviews with 30 principals (20 IPLA graduates and 10 current participants) and review of IPLA documents reflect favorable responses to the program by principals and its strengths and weaknesses. (SLD)
This study uses social network analysis to describe the social network of college mentors in a college access program. Urban students in the program are paired with college mentors-students, professors, and other institutional agents-to help improve their college going process. The study analyzes the social networks within which the mentors are embedded, and highlights how different mentors have varying levels of social capital.
Analyzes concepts of access and success as they relate to educational practice for homeless students, describing a congressional policy shift and barriers to education. A survey of 45 state coordinators and a case study of the Chicago (Illinois) public schools reveal how difficult it is to provide success for homeless students. (SLD)
Examines Chicano parents' expectations for the socialization of their children and notes their dissatisfaction with some aspects of how they themselves were raised. Also provides examples of how minority parents undergo transitions between past, present, and future cultural expectations and how they, along with their children, are involved in forging new cultural forms and identities. (GR)
Explores the politics of education in the case of the establishment and reauthorization of a New York school district to serve the special education students of the Hasidic Jewish community of Kiryas Joel. The case of Kiryas Joel illustrates the political power of a single-interest special interest group. (SLD)
The interrelationship between accountability, education, and public good are explored in relation to R. Manzer's (1994) analysis of educational policies and liberalism typology. The political, economic, ethical, and technological forms of liberalism can provide one basis for informed choice of accountability policies in urban education of students with diverse needs. (MMU)
The achievement gap persists within American classrooms. Although teachers do make a difference in terms of what and how much students achieve, educational practitioners and policy makers would be well served to consider social inequities created by demographic realities, instructional practices that engender broad student participation, and accountability measures that compare districts fairly.
Considers the use of outcome-based education (OBE) as an accountability system. The interpretation and use of OBE for accountability and issues arising from its use are reviewed. The use of OBE will exacerbate rather than solve current problems in education, but its potential should be explored. (SLD)
Describes the use of cost effectiveness analysis of educational productivity in Phase I and II of the Regents Study of Organizational Change. Twenty school districts were selected for the study based on declining enrollment, high noninstructional expenses, high state aid, and high local tax burdens. (MMU)
Examines difficulties in developing clear charter school standards, capacity, and expertise, recognizing the charter school movement as the conflation of several sometimes contradictory ideas; discussing tensions between competing versions of charter schooling; considering four modifications that could render charter regulation more effective; and noting drawbacks of these remedies and the need to compromise some goals for the sake of others. (SM)
Argues that unless there is a general agreement in society about the purpose of education, until the school can control the factors that determine success, and until the school can ask all children to enter a common cultural tradition, the school can only respond to the demand for accountability by pleading impotence or by shifting it to those who are demanding it. (Author/JM)
A survey of the broad policy community rates the governor, Democratic and Republican lawmakers, mayor, Chicago Board of Education, district central office, and the Chicago Teachers union in their work of Chicago school governance before and after the July 1995 restructuring. Preliminary results suggest improvement in school governance following the last reform. (MMU)
Examines the flexibility and accountability standards of the North Carolina charter school laws compared with the charter school legislation of Arizona and California. North Carolina's charter school legislation seems to have the flexibility charter school advocates would wish, with the necessary accountability requirements. (SLD)
Uses the home-education policy arena as a lens through which to view changing beliefs and practices about student assessment. The home-education policies of 10 states illustrate issues relating to accountability in public and private schools and the use of standardized tests. (SLD)
Suggests that more attention should be given to those charged with granting school charters, discussing different types of charter school authorizers (school districts, state boards or departments of education, other existing public entities, and new public boards created to serve as authorizers). Describes the roles and responsibilities of authorizers regarding accountability, noting political factors that complicate the accountability process. (SM)
The purpose of the study was to compare and contrast influences principals have on staffing, curriculum issues, and discipline policies in high- and low-performing urban high schools. The data for the present study were drawn from the first year follow up of the Educational Longitudinal Survey of 2002-2004 (ELS: 02), administered by the National Center for Educational Statistics. Of the 14,000 school administrators surveyed, only high-and low-performing urban high schools were included for this study. The results of this study revealed four areas where principals differed in their perceptions of their individual influences on academic achievement at their respective schools. Principals from high achieving urban school tend to have more influence on hiring and firing teaching staff and curriculum issues, such as course offerings and curricular guidelines. Principals from low achieving schools have more influence on school funding.
Educational research and reforms tend to focus on what happens inside schools, despite research consistently indicating that nonschool factors contribute more to the large achievement gap between different races and classes than do in-school factors. We now hear a growing call for social reform as a solution, but an important question remains, “Can social policy close the achievement gap?” This article examines the research from a number of different disciplines and fields and finds that we have plenty of reason to believe that social policy can alter educational performance but little evidence that it does. As such, a number of questions need to be answered before we can claim that social reform can meaningfully and efficiently narrow the achievement gap. Future directions for research and policy are discussed.
If teachers represent a child’s most important asset, they also can be a child’s greatest liability, especially in states where a shortage of well-qualified teachers impedes the academic progress of African American students in learning contexts. The author asserts that a transformation in practices must occur in teacher education programs if these programs are to become places where preservice candidates learn to adopt pedagogies that are instrumental in the academic achievement of African American students in urban schools. A proposal for comprehensive, transformative approaches for achieving systemic change is warranted in the eradication of structural inequities that currently exist in urban schools.
1. This study examined the relationships between students’ attendance at full-day, half-day, or no preschool and first grade reading achievement. 214 urban, low SES public first grade students of mixed ethnicities were studied. Using the students’ Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA2) scores (Beaver, 2006), results indicated that by the middle of first grade students who completed one year of full-day preschool significantly outperformed students who did not attend preschool. Students who completed one year of full-day preschool also outperformed students who completed half-day preschool, although not to a significant degree. Additionally, students who completed half-day preschool outperformed students who did not attend preschool, although not to a significant degree. The results further showed that significant differences between the groups were not apparent at the start of first grade, demonstrating that preschool attendance may not show immediate, positive benefits.
Although African Americans continue to demonstrate a desire for education, African American male enrollment and completion rates in higher education are dismal when compared to other ethnic groups. Researchers and scholars have noted various theories and philosophies responsible for the academic disengagement of African American males in higher education. This article will provide a new contextual lens for understanding the academic disengagement of African American males using a tenet of Critical Theory as a method to explain the African American male achievement disparity. Additionally, this research offers employable strategies and activities that may encourage African American male achievement.
This qualitative study explored Teach for America (TFA) alumni teachers’ discourse on Arizona language policy, conducted with eight teachers in the Phoenix metropolitan area who received their professional teacher preparation from TFA, a national organization that uses alternative paths to certification to place teachers in low-income schools. During the 2009-2010 school year, we investigated how TFA alumni teachers described the state-mandated English-only language policy, which requires all labeled English language learners (ELLs) to enroll in English language development (ELD) classrooms for 4 hr of daily skill-based English instruction. In addition to their open evaluation and critique of the language policy, teachers’ discourse revealed language policy appropriation, as the teachers tweaked and stretched the language policy directives to match their ideology, pedagogy, and classroom context. Findings from our discourse analysis of the interview data demonstrate that the teachers’ discourse reflected their TFA preparation regarding recognizing the flaws in the educational system and taking action to make change within the four walls of their urban classrooms. The research holds implications for language education reform through recognizing the active role of the teacher in language policy formation and implementation.
One doesn't need to be able to speak English, just give advice. . . . Advise them and help them, however one is able. That's all the child wants. That's the role of the parent. And if the child understands, fine. The father, the duty of the parents, we have to help them grow straight. Have you ever seen a tree being planted? What do they do to the tree? You put a little stick so that that tree grows straight [gestures straight line upward] and then we go on top of that [both hands gesture as if smoothing out dirt]. That's how it is. That's the absolute truth.
This case study explores how a community-based truancy prevention program mediates against absenteeism, truancy, and dropping out and positively transforms the lives of Black and Latina/Latino middle school youth. Findings suggest that community-school partnerships are critical in the quest to combat truancy and the alarming dropout rate among urban youth. This study also shows how committed individuals can work to engage and empower low-income urban youth who are disengaged from school. Extensive interviews and observations with Latina/Latino and Black youth demonstrate how the intervention program mediates against social and academic failure. Using grounded theory, this article explores four student-identified dimensions that impact his/her (re)engagement with school: (a) the importance of space that promotes peer relations, (b) incentive structures within programs, (c) the need for social networks, and (d) youth advocacy as a mechanism for institutional accountability. Implications for combating truancy, reducing dropout, and promoting student engagement are discussed. (Contains 2 figures.)
Describes the most prominent of the conservative citizens' groups and reviews the strategies they have used in their efforts to affect U.S. public education. Although there is evidence of some compromise, there are areas where it may never be possible to find common ground. (SLD)
Discusses teaching qualitative research methodology to graduate education students. Advocates creating a social context for classroom learning, as opposed to the traditional experiential approach. Includes examples of three course descriptions. (FMW)
Describes the characteristics, implementation, and evaluation of eight school restructuring designs in an impoverished, urban, district in 1995 in Memphis (Tennessee). Type of program design, quality of professional training, resources, principal leadership, and teacher support affected the restructuring. (MMU)
Addresses the concern of educational adequacy: the availability of properly financed and managed accelerated-education programs that produce high minimum educational outcomes for disadvantaged students. Offers 11 specific educational policy and organizational elements that can be implemented to "remedy" educational inadequacy by courts in cooperation with legislative bodies, state legislatures, or urban districts. (GR)