Extended Essay

1086 words - 5 pages

Some parents perceive and attribute success to how they’ve turned out and who they’ve become. In some cases, this can subtly hint to the student to drop out of school and care for family and siblings, and in other cases, it can be of encouragement to become successful, and this usually occurs in traditional and/or financially unstable families. Such teachings do not entail academic success, they are demonstrated, incorporated and stressed upon in a student’s life, thus forming their framework, who they are, and how they perceive the world. Consequently, such traditions and parenting leads to more kids who drop out from school, some because they feel bad about not being there and want to support their families, and others because they want to become like their parents who are of course, in a way, their role models. Other parents promote education even if it is not how they were raised, this is because they realise that culture has evolved (acculturation) and that it’s best to allow their kids to achieve a degree that in the long term could sustain and maintain them. Student engagement is an essential component of academic resilience (Jeremy D. Finn and Donald A. Rock, 1997), but with cultural and family traditions that are taught and passed on, student engagement becomes mediocre, and hence academic success is not achieved. The book ‘Con Respeto, bridging the distance between culturally diverse families and schools’ (by Guadalupe Valdes, 1996), observed ten families who lived in a semi-rural area near the U.S-Mexican border, in which the adults were Mexican-born. Valdes learning about their work experiences, struggles to find housing, involvement in their children's education, their cultural values, and more. She found that the highest education level achieved by the adults of the families was 4th grade. Their jobs were very simple, and living conditions were poor. Children were responsible for contributing to family chores, and bringing in an income when it was practical and possible to do so. Valdes wrote that “Success was defined as having hardworking sons and virtuous daughters. Families never imagined that young people might need to make choices between family responsibilities and their own ambitions”. Parents realised and understood that dropping out of school at any time, especially in the U.S. didn’t put a child in the situation to provide for their family, so they believed in education to a certain extent but were strongly in support of their children’s graduation from school. Although education was of importance to the Mexicans who lived in the U.S, education was a top priority. In such closed societies, parents don’t see education a solution that could change their harsh economic status. People of such traditions saw “too much education” as a cause for not being able to cope with the difficulties of life and the simple everyday practical tasks. Kids who went to work after finishing high school and supported their families financially...

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