We investigate the effects of participation in the Chicago Child-Parent Center and Expansion Program from ages 3 to 9 on early school dropout at age 17. The Child-Parent Centers offer a government-funded educational intervention program in preschool through second or third grade in 20 locations in Chicago’s poorest neighborhoods. Using data from the Chicago Longitudinal Study, we address two major questions: (1) Is participation in the Child-Parent Centers program associated with a lower rate of high school dropout at age 17? (2) Which nonintervention variables predict high school dropout? After comparing children in 20 intervention sites with similar children who attended schools in similarly poor neighborhoods in which the intervention program was not offered, we find that participation in the intervention offered by the Child-Parent Centers is associated with a 7 or 8 percentage point reduction in the probability of dropout. Our findings also indicate that parental involvement in schooling and avoidance of frequent school mobility are important predictors of high school completion.
Alarming numbers of students, particularly minority students, are being suspended and expelled from our nations' schools. The surface issue is discipline; however, the underlying issues are literacy and barriers to academic success. To address these issues, a large urban district opened a new school for students who were not succeeding in traditional settings, had escalating discipline problems, and were failing academically. It was called Project Succeed Academy. This article details the lessons learned in the schools design, implementation, and evolution. An analysis of the political, community, and financial issues that caused reduction of the original design are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Individual interviews were held with 165 boys and 139 girls in Grades 3 to 6 in a New York City public school. Professional and white-collar aspirations were expressed by 30% of the boys (modal aspiration, policeman) and 85% of the girls (modal aspiration, nurse). Job titles and locus of performance given to the 18 plates of the Vocational Apperception Test were scored. Mean scores of boys and girls did not differ, but girls' responses to the male and female teacher and secretary plates were significantly superior to those of the boys. Professionally aspiring boys scored significantly higher than boys with other aspirations. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
This article was bestowed the 2011 Editor’s Choice Collection (1st edition) for publication of one of the journal's most noteworthy manuscripts.
Despite decades of research examining the disproportionate representation of racial minority students in special education, our understanding of the complexity of disproportionality remains incomplete and much of the previous research was designed without a clear theoretical framework. This exploratory study applied a structural theoretical lens as a means of understanding racial inequity in special education across analytical scales, racial groups, and disability categories. The findings confirm differential risk of educational disability across racial groups. Based on the theory adopted, several hypotheses were tested regarding the relations of relative risk to district structural features, with conflicting results found.
Over 50 years after the monumental decision of Brown v. Board of Education, many U.S. schools remain separate and unequal. This includes schools in the nation’s capital, Washington, D.C. The article discusses how in the two centuries of public education in Washington, D.C., Black educators used a variety of subversive tactics to educate their children. This article chronicles critical milestones in educational policy that affected Black educators working in segregated, all-Black schools in Washington, D.C. The authors demonstrate that, in the face of the oppressive sociopolitical conditions and racist policies, Black educators continued to serve in their own interests by fostering liberatory spaces for their children.
Examines old schools and new, inside and outside, in the historic city center and its developing suburban rings, for the "respectable classes" and the "struggling masses," as a municipal investment and as a design problem, in order to understand the material culture of vital urban places, not as facade, but as environment. (Author/JM)
Discusses (1) how schooling for social and economic mobility worked invidiously against poor Black migrant children; and (2) how the school's role as a mobility agent was subsumed under the immediacy of averting disenchantment with the social system through measures of social control. (Author/BE)
Uses New York City schools as a case study in the translation of national policy into local action during World War I. Examines how the Board of Education initiated the intertwined tasks of stimulating patriotism and promoting Americanization. Discusses how schools were used as channels of communication to all Americans. (JS)
Describes how Ernest Hartwell's efforts to establish junior high schools in Buffalo with broad curricula failed, largely because the city's would-be political reformers did not accept the importance of educational reform. (CMG)
This study analyzes the increase in school segregation in Delaware from a quantitative perspective. The article tests the hypothesis that the declaration of unitary status that released the Wilmington area school districts from their desegregation order caused the increase in segregation. The research reveals that the declaration of unitary status contributed to an increase in segregation in the Wilmington area. However, the primary factor in the statewide increase in school segregation was the flight of White students from the Wilmington area schools, a result that might be expected from the imposition of a desegregation order but not from its termination.
Discusses problems with reform issues that focus specifically on changing the system of educational policymaking to achieve excellence but lack safeguards against compromising equality of educational opportunity in the public school system. Explores the conflicting political views of reform policy, which include economic issues and democratic value debates. (JS)
This instrumental case study reviews the 1994-2004 period of state financial oversight in East St. Louis, Illinois School District 189, with a secondary review of the initial years of NCLB implementation. Although the oversight panel’s fiscal management did generate financial stability, case findings indicate that its accountability processes did not result in sustained improvements in student achievement indicators despite anticipated links between the two in the panel’s reporting. Furthermore, the oversight process operated as a hierarchical structure without identification of cultural implications. Attention to culture and subsidiarity are indicated for future state–district partnerships oriented toward urban educational reform.
Pay incentives effectively motivate teachers in a suburban school district in New York State to reduce their rates of absence, particularly the number of sick days used. This suggests clearer perspectives on teacher absence. (BJV)
Examines the extent of adolescent drug abuse and alcoholism, psychological factors that lead to drug abuse and drinking, and treatment approaches that have been used with young people. Focuses on drug-abusing family systems and the roles of the school and the community in combatting drug abuse. (Author/GC)
The responses of 109 Black and 201 White urban college students to a questionnaire were examined for connections between social background, self-concept, and social and academic experiences. Findings indicate that ethnic identity has no effect on performance. (FMW)
Contrary to the popular conception that high school students find no value in their studies, the students surveyed seem unusually content with their academic coursework. In large numbers they report that their courses have been important to them personally. (LHW)
This paper examines the effects of pre-entry coaching (both in terms of money and efforts) on achievement of Russian high school graduates as measured by the results of the Unified state examination (USE). Using a dataset of students from the 16 biggest Russian cities, which includes information on USE results, family background, school characteristics and patterns on pre-entry training, we estimate the factors which determine the final USE results. Parental education, family income, student’s abilities and whether or not the student graduated from a gymnasium or magnet school are significant predictors of USE results in Russian, Mathematics and the average USE score. Characteristics of pre-entry courses (duration of a program as well as total fee) have positive influence on USE scores, but the effect of this kind of pre-entry training is moderate. Attending classes with tutors has a significant (but still moderate) effect only on the USE score in Russian.
Forty-one relatively high-achieving students of color were interviewed about the competition for grades that they felt in their high schools. Students of color are particularly interesting with regard to competition because they have sometimes been portrayed as rejecting academic achievement. The students reported competing for grades. They generally thought competition was beneficial. Students commented that they focused on grade point average to help them improve their grades and monitored the grades that other students were receiving. They made almost no comments about competition leading to learning or mastering skills. Their responses are interpreted in light of motivation research that suggests that academic competition and social comparison can lead to maladaptive motivational orientations.
The current study examined the association between home–school dissonance and academic cheating among 344 high school juniors and seniors at two urban high schools. Students completed two subscales of the Patterns of Adaptive Learning Scale (PALS) and one subscale of the Academic Motivation Scale (AMS). Analyses revealed that home–school dissonance significantly predicted both amotivation and academic cheating. In addition, results revealed that amotivation was a significant mediator of the association between home–school dissonance and academic cheating. Limitations and future research directions are discussed.
Discusses (1) the use of chi square significance tests in social science and educational literature; (2) chi square in relation to sample size; (3) field difficulties with chi square analysis as exemplified in Milwaukee County Juvenile Court data; and (4) alternative methods for using chi square in field research. (Author/GC)
Responds to a recent article in which Harry Miller criticizes the use of ethnographic or naturalistic methods in educational research. Reviews a number of ethnographic studies of schools, discusses the methodological rigor of such studies, and stresses the importance of information that can be gained through this type of research. (GC)
Levels of academic achievement are related to race, socioeconomic status, and cultural alienation in a study conducted at a high school in Berkeley, California. The interaction among different classes and ethnic groups is also studied as a factor in student success. (APM)
Reports a study attempting to test the hypothesis that Mexican-American students' cliquishness is related to their minority status, and that this may be tested in schools by comparing variance in achievement. (Author/JM)
Results covering a period of two years (including three academic years) fail to give any evidence that elementary school children who are bussed do any better academically than those who remain in inner-city schools. (Author/AM)
This study measured the relationship between outcome expectations, outcome value, and cultural mistrust among African American male high school students (N = 75) attending an urban, Southern California school. We hypothesized that a negative perception of the dominant culture would negatively affect academic outcome expectations and academic achievement values. The results indicated, as hypothesized, a significant inverse relationship between cultural mistrust and outcome expectations. There was also a significant relationship between cultural mistrust and outcome value. In addition, cultural mistrust and outcome value were significant predictors of academic outcome expectations. Findings are discussed in terms of the importance of understanding sociocultural influences on achievement motivation among ethnic minority youth.
This article explores the results of a study of Latino youth in New York City public high schools. We propose that the common element among the schools is what we call here transcaring, an overarching culture of care that allows for the creation of third spaces within school, transcending traditional dichotomies around language, culture, place, and measurement found in many U.S. schools. We identify the different threads that make up transcaring strategies—translanguaging, transculturación, transcollaboration and transactions through dynamic assessments—focusing on each of its components by drawing examples from our data.
This study explores racial-ethnic identity and academic achievement of five young African American men in 11th and 12th grade in an urban pilot high school. Data gathered through individual and group interviews and a questionnaire were analyzed to understand how academically successful African American male adolescents interpret their social and academic lives to achieve school success while also maintaining a healthy racial-ethnic identity (HREI). The findings reveal that the young men developed layered and complex notions of what it means to be African American, male, and successful against the backdrop of having achieved a HREI within a nurturing school environment.
Although researchers report that motivational variables, such as interest and self-efficacy, positively relate to forms of achievement (e.g., standardized test scores, grades, number of problems solved correctly), other studies indicate that motivation's contribution to achievement is not consistent. Fewer studies, however, have examined these connections within African American samples. This 2-year, cross-sectional investigation of eighth- and ninth-grade students specifically focused on motivation and GPA in a large, urban, predominantly African American, school district in the Midwest. Regression analyses of self-report levels of three motivational variables (i.e., self-efficacy beliefs, goal orientations, and domain interest) revealed that significant gender differences existed in goal orientation and achievement scores in both grades. Furthermore, self-efficacy and learning goals contributed to domain interests but the predictive value of these three motivational variables on achievement differed at each grade level.
Holds that a good theory of academic failure due to cultural disadvantagement and similar factors must also explain academic success. Reviews a number of longitudinal field studies (including one of the author's own) on successful Negro youngsters. (JM)
The author draws on principles of critical race theory to reflect on his elementary education at a successful urban Catholic school. He contends that his education was built on the integration of two epistemological pillars: centric and conflict theories. The implementation of this matrix of theories served as the necessary ingredients to foster his movement from the inner city to the ivory tower and a career in mathematics education research. The article concludes with a discussion of the tension created by his "voice" within traditional academic discourse.
Found that considerable cross-racial acceptance occurred in both grades, though Black students accepted more White than Black classmates. Also found a shift between kindergarten and first grade, with race becoming more of a factor in choice of friends among the older students. (RDN)
This article utilizes interview data to explore how notions of risk operate in a school—university partnership program. Our analysis traces the divergence between conceptualizations of “at-risk” in scholarship, its use in policy, and students’ responses to this terminology. Although students targeted in such programs are often constructed in both scholarship and policy in terms of deficiency, it is a designation the students themselves are often quite resistant to, and consider it to be an inaccurate representation of their circumstances. We conclude by suggesting that despite the pervasive contemporary espousal of inclusivity and equity in education, universities essentially remain the site of exclusionary practice.
Reviews research on teacher work tasks and individual and collective teacher resistance. Based on a case study of four teachers at an urban, unionized, middle school; distinguishes between institutional political resistance and cultural political resistance. (FMW)
A sample of 20 elementary schools in Detroit is used in a study of school effects reported in this article. Regression analysis (controlling for previous performance) is used to demonstrate that specific buildings do have an impact on student achievement. (Author/EB)
The purposes of this study were to assess the effects on academic achievement of (1) student busing status, (2) student ethnicity, and (3) the interaction between ethnicity and busing status. (Author/AM)
Focusing on an inner-city school system, schools which include the poor, blacks, and immigrant children, this study examines some of the determinants and effects of teachers' expectations for class achievement: data consist of results from expectations measures administered to the teachers plus pupils' scores on the Stanford Achievement Test. (Author/JM)
This study examines whether neighborhood level collective socialization processes are racialized. It addresses whether Black and White students are affected differentially by their general neighborhood characteristics; whether the racial composition of positive and negative role models in a neighborhood shape student performance differently; and whether Black and White students receive differential benefit from the presence of same-race role models. Using the National Educational Longitudinal Study (NELS) of 1988 linked to 1990 Census information at the neighborhood level, the current study finds that race generally does not critically influence neighborhood effects on educational achievement. Theoretical implications of these results are discussed, and I recommend that the when considering who can act as a role model for ethnic minority youth, policy makers should consider a broader range of individuals than just same-race individuals. This research suggests that White adults may also be able to positively affect change for students “at risk” for underachievement. Finally, another take-away message of this research is that the talents and abilities of all neighborhood adults need to be fully tapped to address the problem of educational underachievement.
Educators, administrators, and policymakers focus much attention on closing the achievement gap, and various approaches have been suggested. The present study focuses on one approach being suggested: student–teacher ethnic matching. The study focused on the long-term contributions of African American ethnic matching to mathematical test scores of 1,200 African American students from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Kindergarten—fifth data set. Employing a two-level growth model, this study of impact from student–teacher ethnic matching revealed that a student having at least one teacher who ethnically matched themselves between kindergarten and fifth grade had a significant impact on mathematics achievement.
This study attempts to go beyond the individual-level factors that explain the underachievement of the Black male student and specifically focuses on the enormous growth of female-headed households. To this end, 2,849 middle school students in a large Midwestern school district in the United States were used. It was found that there is a significant association between the proportion of female-headed households and the achievement of Black male students only, in contrast to that of Black female and White students. Specifically, as the proportion of female-headed households in neighborhoods increases, Black male students tend to show poorer outcomes. Implications for the finding are reviewed.
This study examines whether students in the Chicago Public School System are at a disadvantage relative to students in suburban school systems and other school systems in Illinois after many background factors are taken into account. It is shown that grade school students in Chicago do as well as their counterparts else-where. However, high school students in Chicago have a much larger drop-out rate and lower test scores in reading after adjusting for background variables.
Research showed that children’s school-entry academic skills are strong predictors of their later achievement, thereby highlighting the importance of children’s achievement at kindergarten entry. This article defines a particular type of parental involvement in children’s education and uses a representative sample of American urban kindergarteners to examine its effect on urban children’s mathematics, reading, science, and social studies achievement at kindergarten entry. The findings in this article are isomorphic in the different subject areas and show that children with more access to this particular type of parental involvement tend to have higher academic achievement than their peers.
This qualitative case study explores the cultural impact the Piney Woods School, a historically Black independent boarding school, had on the social and academic experiences of four of its graduates in attendance at two traditionally White universities. The article discusses the collegiate experiences of four students: Samantha, Ira, Tony, and Bobby. Though their individual collegiate experiences markedly differ from each other, their experiences reflect overall the historically Black boarding school experience as instrumental in shaping student achievement, cultural esteem, and sense of belonging. Studies that explore the secondary school experience, such as the historically Black boarding school, continue to provide other contexts in which to examine how school environment can negatively or positively influence African American students’ achievement in college, particularly at traditionally White colleges and universities.