14 SES 07 A, Migrating/International/Minority Families, Community and Schooling
In Taiwan the number of international marriages is increasing. The majority of foreign spouses come from China and Southeast Asian countries such as Vietnam and Indonesia. Most Taiwanese who marry these foreign spouses come from lower socio-economic status in countryside, and some even have disabilities. Many of these international marriages are based more on economics than on love. Many foreign spouses get married at a young age, and give birth to babies while they are still adjusting to life in Taiwan. Many foreign spouses (especially from Southeast Asia) encounter difficulty in adjustment, such as language, culture, marriage, parenting etc. Not only foreign spouses encounter difficulty in adjustment, their children are also considered at risk most likely because of the lower socio-economic status of these families. It is estimated that one in eight babies has one foreign-born parent. Research indicates that their children have a higher risk of developmental delay and learning difficulties at school. How to help foreign spouses and their families has attracted increasing attention from policy makers and researchers.
Small (2010) states that children whose parents are involved with their education tend to perform betterin school (Desforges & Abouchaar, 2003; Epstein, 2001; Steinberg, 2004). When parents are knowledgeable, encouraging, and involved, students demonstrate higher academic and behavior levels, have higher aspirations, and display other positive school behaviors (Bakker, Denessen, & Brus-Laeven, 2007; Epstein, 2001). Thao (2009) also notes that research has clearly linked parent involvement to positive educational outcomes and academic success, including more positive attitudes towards school, better grades, and higher test scores.
This study was intended to describe parent-teacher involvement of children from families with a Southeast Asian or Chinese spouse, and its relations to children’s adjustments. There were three major objectives.
1. To describe parent-teacher involvement of children from families with a Southeast Asian or Chinese spouse.
2. To identify child- and family-selection factors associated with parent-teacher involvement.
3. To examine the relations between parent-teacher involvement and children’s adjustments, controlling for child and family factors.
After controlling for children’s prior academic achievement, parent-teacher involvement significantly predicted children’s current Chinese scores (β=.087, p=.049, F(2, 256)=153.372, p=.000, ΔR2 =.007). Parent-teacher involvement significantly predicted children’s peer relationships, including popularity (β=.293, p=.000, F(2, 253)=18.014, p=.000, ΔR2 =.16.6), rejection (β=.-.333, p=.000, F(2, 253)=18.792, p=.000, ΔR2 =.173), pick fights (β=.-.249, p=.000, F(2, 253)=7.124, p=.000, ΔR2 =.067). In summary, results suggest that parent-teacher involvement is related to positive outcomes of children in international families. Future studies could explore differences between parent-teacher involvement of Taiwanese-born parents and foreign-born parents and their relations to child outcomes. In addition, in-depth interviews might be conducted to better understand foreign-born parents’ thoughts regarding parent-teacher involvement. References: Achenbach, T. M. (1991). Integrative guide for the 1991 CBCL/4-18, YSR, and TRF profiles. Burlington: University of Vermont. Bakker, J., Denessen, E., & Brus-Laeven, M. (2007). Socio-economic background, parental involvement and teacher perceptions of these in relation to pupil achievement. Educational Studies, 33, 177-192. Cillessen, A. H. N., Terry, R. A., Coie, J. D., & Lochman, J. E. (1992, April). Accuracy of teacher-identification of children’s sociometric status positions. Paper presented at the Conference on Human Development, Atlanta, GA. Desforges, C. and Abouchaar, A. (2003). The impact of parental involvement, parental support and family education on pupil achievement and adjustment: A literature review. DfES Research Report 433. London: DfES. Epstein, J. L. (2001). School, family, and community partnerships: Preparing educators and improving schools. Boulder, CO: Westview. Miller-Johnson, Maumary-Gremaud, & Conduct Disorders Research Group (1995). Parent-Teacher Involvement Questionnaire. Durham, NC: Duke University. Small, L. S. (2010). Parental involvement in an urban school setting. Rowan University, Glassboro, New Jersey. Steinberg, L. (2004). The ten basic principles of good parenting. New York: Simon & Schuster. Thao, M. (2009, Dec.). Parental involvement in school, engaging immigrant parents. Wilder Research. www.wildersearch.org
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