Thesis

Contextual Factors that Contribute to the Level of Latino Parent Involvement in a Dual Language Elementary School

This study examines the factors that contribute to the involvement of Latino parents in a dual language elementary school, located in southern California. The research used a triangulation of mixed-methods approach (e.g., surveys, interviews, theory of Cultural Capital). Results indicate that Latino parents (n=13), were overall less involved in school practices, compared to parents of the dominant group. The primary factors or barriers to parent participation were parents’ financial, educational, and cultural contexts. A language barrier did not hinder parent involvement at this school. The findings will assist educators to look beyond the common misconceptions of “parents are just not interested” or “they don’t want to be involved.” This research provides educators with recommendation and strategies to involve Latino parents in affirming and empowering ways. Overall, there is still a great need for further and deeper research on Latino parent involvement in dual language schools to truly provide parents with opportunities to take a more meaningful role in the education of their children.

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