Date of Award
Daniel Brisson, Ph.D.
Education, Families, Subsidized Housing
Your Family, Your Neighborhood (YFYN) is an educational intervention with families in low-income and subsidized housing communities. YFYN supports households facing issues associated with poverty. These include supporting low-income families as they navigate their children's experience in poor performing schools, barriers and access to healthcare and role in addressing the challenges of living distressed neighborhoods they live in. Through the 10-week manualized curriculum, families work on connections that affect multiple systems in their lives with a focus on the family, school and neighborhood. This mixed methods study describes the development and provides results of the YFYN intervention on parental involvement and academic achievement. Utilizing a quasi-experimental design, YFYN was delivered to four cohorts of families living in two neighborhoods in Denver, CO. A total of 19 families completed the ten-week intervention with a total of 11 participants in the comparison group. The effects of the intervention on child participants were assessed using between group comparisons of parental response scores from pre-test to post-test on indicators of academic success and parent involvement. Participants in the treatment group demonstrated increases in parent participation in school activities, communication with teachers and staff, the frequency of reading to their child, and parent/child homework routines. Additionally, parents reported increases in their child's progress in school.
Interviews were conducted with nine participants at the completion of the YFYN intervention. A phenomenological approach was employed to understand participant experiences of YFYN. Participants were asked to identify aspects of YFYN that were most beneficial to their children's educational needs. Themes from the phenomenological approach revealed participation in YFYN helped participants build their confidence and find their voice, improve parent-child communication, and create a social support system. Although participation in YFYN aided parents in supporting their children's education, parents still experience barriers to school involvement. Barriers include the lack of supports for single parents or primary caregivers, undertones of racism from school professionals, and language and cultural misinterpretations between families and school personnel. Implications for practice, policy and future research are discussed.
Peña, Stephanie Lechuga, "Improving Children's Academic Performance through Parent Engagement: Development and Initial Findings from the Your Family, Your Neighborhood Intervention" (2016). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 1143.
Received from ProQuest
Stephanie Lechuga Peña
Social Research, Education, Social Work