14 SES 13 A, Family Education, Parenting and School-Family-Community Links III
A multiplicity of empirical studies reveals the practical relevance of parent involvement for various educational actors: For students, it was observed that parent involvement is positively associated with student achievement gains (e. g. Jeynes, 2007; Shute, Hansen, Underwood & Razzouk, 2011; Sui-Chu & Willms, 1996). Especially learning-related activities and high expectations for their children’s schooling are identified as very important factors (Hill & Tyson, 2009; Jeynes, 2007; Shute et al., 2011). On the teacher side, more positive attitudes towards students’ parents, more job satisfaction and less conflicts in the class were noted (Henderson & Berla, 1994; Wyrick & Rudasill, 2009).
Based on the current body of research, three areas of parental engagement in the school contexts can be theoretically differentiated: organizational (e. g. parents’ voluntary help at school such as cooperation in preparing school events, accompanying class journeys), conceptual (e. g. participation in governance activities, in committees or in parent organizations), and direct learning support (e. g. helping their children with their homework) (e. g. Epstein et al., 2002; Grolnick & Slowiaczek, 1994). In spite of growing interest in parent involvement in general, evidence concerning differences with respect to migration background is still mixed. While some studies attributed a lesser extent of involvement by non-native parents to potentially differing beliefs about the role of parents in school (e. g. Delgado-Gaitan, 1991; Turney & Kao, 2009) others emphasized that this lesser amount of minority parents is limited towards particular forms of participation, whereas in other domains, they engage more frequently (Sui-Chu & Willms, 1996).
Because of this unsatisfactory state of research, it is of crucial importance to test a comprehensive motivation model of parent involvement also considering differences in the motivational structure by parental cultural backgrounds. When asking for the motivational reasons of decisions, the expectancy-value model by Eccles and Wigfield (2002) is the state-of-the-art theoretical framework in educational psychology to analyze several educational decisions and attitudes of parents based on motivational aspects. It was shown that members of different cultures differ in their emphasis on particular values (Rokeach, 1979). Because of the fact that different cultures and countries provide different opportunities for children, e. g. regarding individuals choices (Triandis & Suh, 2002), expectancies and values are influenced. For parents with a higher socioeconomic status the perceived benefit of education is higher than for less privileged families. In addition, the relative educational costs are higher for parents with a lower socioeconomic status than for parents with a higher socioeconomic status (Paulus & Blossfeld, 2007). But parents with migration background often have higher educational aspirations (Kristen & Dollmann, 2009).
Given the importance attributed to close cooperation between schools and parents and the need for increasing parental participation, the objectives of the present study are to test for differences both in the extent of participation across different forms and in the assessment of values and expectations depending on parental migration background. Our main research questions are as follows:
Q1. Can three theoretically defined forms of parent involvement (organizational, conceptual, direct learning support engagement) be empirically supported?
Q2. Are there differences in the extent of these three forms of parent involvement depending on parental migration background?
Q3. Are there differences in the assessment of subjective values and expectations of parent involvement depending on parental migration background?
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