Latin American immigrant parents and their children's teachers in U.S. early childhood education programmes

Authors:
Robert Crosnoe, Arya Ansari
Published Online:
26 May 2015
DOI:
10.1002/ijop.12173
Pages:
431–439
Volume/Issue No:
Volume 50 Issue 6

Additional Options

For many immigrants, their children's schools offer their first sustained interaction with the major societal institutions of their new countries, and so exploring the ways in which immigrant parents manage their children's educational experiences offers insight into how they adapt to new cultural norms, customs and expectations and how they are treated in return. This study delved into the involvement of Latin American immigrant parents in U.S. education, shifting the traditional focus down from elementary and secondary school to early childhood education. Statistical analysis of nationally representative data revealed that Latina immigrants had lower frequencies of most home‐ and community‐based involvement behaviours than U.S.‐born and foreign‐born parents of varying racial/ethnic backgrounds but higher frequencies of involvement behaviours requiring participation in early childhood education programmes. As a window into these national patterns, qualitative data from an early childhood programme in an immigration‐heavy state revealed that Latina immigrant mothers and their children's teachers often talked about each other as partners in supporting children's educational experiences but that their actual interactions tended to socialise mothers into being more passive recipients of teachers' directives.

© 2015 International Union of Psychological Science