Perceptions of African American Parents in the Project L.I.F.T. Learning Community About Their Role in Student Achievement Public Deposited

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Last Modified
  • March 19, 2019
  • Barnes, Raymond
    • Affiliation: School of Education
  • The purpose of this study was to understand how African American parents engaged in their children’s education to support their academic achievement in school. The study explores the “how” and “why” of African American parent involvement in an individual learning community in a southern urban school district. In this study, parent engagement and parent involvement are used interchangeably with a specific focus on actions and beliefs that African American parents demonstrate toward their children’s achievement. The perceptions of African American parents in the study provide an explanation of the barriers to their engagement and how they perceive their individual roles, the school’s role and the principal’s role in creating opportunities for parental engagement. This was an exploratory, single case study that explains African American parent engagement in the Project Leadership and Innovation for Transformation (L.I.F.T.) Learning Community of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools in Charlotte, North Carolina. The Hoover-Dempsey and Sandler (2005) model for parent involvement was used to guide this study. One of the primary understandings of parent engagement in this study is that it is socially constructed by how and why parents engage for their children’s achievement. Focus group interviews were conducted to gain an understanding of the perspectives of African American parents, and individual one-on-one interviews were conducted with principals to understand their actions and beliefs in supporting parent engagement in their schools. African American parent participants believe they should support their children’s academic achievement and they engaged in various ways to help their children achieve. This case study revealed the importance of schools being intentional in supporting the beliefs and actions that parents demonstrate towards their children’s achievement.
Date of publication
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Rights statement
  • In Copyright
  • Ellerbe, James
  • Jordan, Derrick
  • Thompson Dorsey, Dana
  • Doctor of Education
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Education
Graduation year
  • 2017

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