Parental involvement as predictor of 9th grade Latino students' intention to complete high school mediated by student school beliefs after a one year follow-up

Jasmine A Mena, University of Rhode Island

Abstract

Latinos, currently the largest ethnic minority group in the U.S. comprising 12.5% of the population, less likely to graduate from high school than Asians, Whites, and African Americans. Due to the grave implications of low education for economic and social opportunities, an investigation of the variables related to intent to graduate among Latino youth was conducted. ^ The focus of this study was to increase our understanding of the role parents play in students' formation of their intentions to complete high school. A survey was conducted with 137 Latino high school students in 2004. The survey involved questions about their perceptions of personal, family, and school level variables related to intention to graduate from high school. The participants' school status was obtained a year later. All participants were in the 96 grade in regular classrooms in the same high school in Providence, Rhode Island. ^ Three research hypotheses were tested in the present study. Hypotheses one and two investigated the adequacy of the proposed model, while hypothesis three, the main research hypothesis, stated that the Student School Beliefs latent construct mediates the relationship between the Parental Involvement latent construct and the measured variable Intent to Graduate from High School. Structural Equation Modeling was used to examine the three hypotheses noted above. The findings indicate that the structural model fits the data well and that there is a strong relationship between students' reports of their intentions to complete high school and their actual school status one year later. The hypothesis that students' school beliefs mediate the relationship between parental involvement and students' intentions to complete high school was also supported. ^ The present study builds upon the existing research by demonstrating that parental involvement among Latinos makes a contribution to high school completion. Although not always visible to the schools, Latino parents can provide the support, encouragement, and monitoring necessary for their children to develop a strong identification with education. ^ A collaborative effort involving students, families, schools, and communities is imperative in order to increase the number of Latino students walking across the stage to a more promising future. ^

Subject Area

Psychology, Behavioral|Education, Guidance and Counseling|Education, Educational Psychology|Hispanic American Studies

Recommended Citation

Jasmine A Mena, "Parental involvement as predictor of 9th grade Latino students' intention to complete high school mediated by student school beliefs after a one year follow-up" (2007). Dissertations and Master's Theses (Campus Access). Paper AAI3298372.
http://digitalcommons.uri.edu/dissertations/AAI3298372

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