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The Role of Parents’ School Climate Perceptions on Attainment Expectations for Black Middle Schoolers

Abstract

Parents’ beliefs about their children’s schools are important influences on their parenting and on their children’s outcomes. Because of Black parents’ concerns that their children may encounter racial discrimination in their schools, they may be particularly wary of that environment. We examined whether parents’ school climate perceptions regarding how parents and children are treated in school were related to parents’ own attainment expectations in a sample of Black parents. Five hundred and eighty-six Black parents took part in the study (92% female). Results indicated that parents’ school climate perceptions regarding how parents are treated in schools were associated with parents’ attainment expectations (β = 0.080, p < 0.05). However, parents’ school climate perceptions regarding how their children are treated in school were not associated with parents’ attainment expectations. Our findings highlight the importance of parents’ school climate perceptions on parents’ attainment expectations. These results also provide insights into the ways in which Black parents’ beliefs about the school environment impact their beliefs about their children. The implications of the current findings are discussed in terms of parents’ beliefs and the role of school experiences. Recommendations for future research are discussed.

Highlights

  • Black parents’ school climate perceptions were related to parents’ attainment expectations.

  • The findings of this study highlight the important role schools play on the link between parenting and children’s educational success.

  • Parents’ school climate perceptions regarding how parents are treated in schools were associated with parents’ academic attainment expectations.

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Correspondence to Adrian Gale.

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This research study was conducted retrospectively from data obtained from an online repository. IRB approval for the original study data collection can be located at http://garp.education.uci.edu/madics.html.

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Gale, A., Williams, A., Rowley, S. et al. The Role of Parents’ School Climate Perceptions on Attainment Expectations for Black Middle Schoolers. J Child Fam Stud 31, 61–69 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10826-021-02156-2

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10826-021-02156-2

Keywords

  • Parenting
  • School climate
  • Black parents
  • Parents’ attainment expectations
  • School