Language Classes for Parents at a Two-Way Immersion School in North Carolina: Laying the Groundwork for Third Spaces Public Deposited

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  • March 19, 2019
  • Turner, Alison
    • Affiliation: School of Education
  • This qualitative case study took place at a Spanish/ English Two-Way Immersion (TWI) elementary school in North Carolina and examined the experiences of parents and their language teachers, including myself, who participated in the school-sponsored English and Spanish parent language classes during the 2013-2014 academic school year. The primary purpose of this study was to explore if connections were made between parents and between the home and school during the parent language classes with the goal of understanding to what degree, if at all, third spaces (Bhabha, 1994; Gutiérrez, 2008) opened as parents worked with one another to learn another language. The secondary purpose of the study was to unpack contextual issues of the school that positively or negatively affected the parent language classes. According to the continuum of third spaces presented in this dissertation, it was found that while some preliminary groundwork was laid for the initial level of third space openings, more work was needed before third spaces might fully open in this context. Subtractive school factors, including over-reliance on top-down transmission and instruction and prevalence of deficit hypothesis about Latino families in particular, ultimately undercut the goals of the language classes to promote authentic connections among parents and with the school. Implications for this work include re-conceptualizing the traditional model of parental involvement, evident in most schools' work with parents today. An alternative model of parental involvement, Collaborative Integration Model of Family-School Connections, is presented. The Collaborative Integration Model reorients how culturally and linguistically diverse schools think about and plan for parents' work at the school. That is, under this new model, parents work in collaboration with one another on tasks that are central to the classroom and school, build relationships based upon confianza, mutual trust, (Dyrness, 2007) and work to create more equitable and humanizing third spaces in schools for all children and families.
Date of publication
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Rights statement
  • In Copyright
  • Griffin, Dana
  • Rong, Xue Lan
  • Wooten, Jennifer
  • Cervantes-Soon, Claudia
  • Glazier, Jocelyn
  • Doctor of Philosophy
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2014
Place of publication
  • Chapel Hill, NC
  • This item is restricted from public view for 2 years after publication.

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