Date of Award

2016

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

School Psychology

Abstract

English Language Learning (ELL) students comprise the largest growing group within schools in the United States (Arias & Morillo-Campbell, 2008; Kindler, 2002 as in Ochoa & Rhodes, 2005). Such large numbers of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) students within schools has led governing institutions to mandate efforts be made to establish greater connections to these families (Tellez & Waxman, 2010). One of these mandating documents is the Illinois State Board of Education Administrative Code which pertains to Transitional Bilingual Education (TBE) of CLD students. This code states that schools with a TBE program must create a parent advisory committee that educates parents about the TBE program and parents’ rights (Illinois General Assembly, 2013) and ideally establishing more collaborative partnerships with CLD families (Patel & Stevens, 2010). Although federally mandated, these programs have not previously been evaluated. This case-study program evaluation attempts to evaluate the utility of such programs by evaluating the effectiveness of a parent education group for Spanish-speaking parents in a suburban school district located in the Midwest of the United States. This qualitative study utilizes a case study approach to evaluating the effectiveness of this program. Using a content analysis approach to interpreting survey, interview, and focus group data, this study found that through establishing strong relationships with families over a period of time, facilitating leadership roles for families within the program, this program successfully accomplished its established program goals of educating parents about the American school system. The findings of this study revealed mixed results regarding the effectiveness of this program to impacting home-school collaboration and communication. The results of this case-study contribute to research to determine the utility of mandating such programs to educate parents about the American school system in exchange for grant funding for TBE programs in schools. The most significant limitation to this study was the small sample size of study participants which limit the generalizability to similar programs for Spanish-speaking parents.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

Share

COinS