NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED538375
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 214
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-2672-1067-8
Parental School Choices in Market-Oriented School Systems: Why Middle Class Asian Immigrants Self-Select into Specialized Academic Programs
Padilla, Hoang-Thuy
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Arizona State University
This study addresses racial segregation in schools by examining the self-selecting patterns of middle class Asian immigrant parents in a public non-charter school district who enrolled their children in specialized academic programs. This phenomenological study focused on the educational history and the decision-making process of school choice in a sample of 11 Chinese and Vietnamese immigrant parents; a majority of them were identified as Chinese mothers. This study was conducted to answer the research questions: (R1) How do the parents' past experiences play a role in their perception of specialized academic programs and the decision-making process of selecting a school? (R2) What kind of informational networks or sources are used to make school choice? (R3) What are parents' notions of academic achievement or success for their children? (R4) How do parents' perceive specialized programs after engaging in them? This study sought to understand the relationship between the parents' own educational experiences and their negotiation of school choice for their children by collecting data through interviews, focus groups, and artifact documents. This study found that (1) the competitive conditions of the parents' educational experiences attributed to their sociocultural belief of education as social mobility which was a significant factor in their selection of an advanced program and expectations of high academic achievement; (2) mothers identified school reviews from friends as the most important information they obtained when they made school choice; these reviews took place in their coethnic social networks in Chinese language schools that offered their children heritage language development, academic, and nonacademic-based extracurricular classes; and (3) parents indicated that school choice is a continuous evaluative and comparative process. Overall, the study highlights the participants' bimodal acquisition of school advantages for their children in market-oriented school systems and the roles parents play in establishing cultural norms in making school choice. In return, these norms have depicted the participants in the model minority role, which leads to the perpetuation of the racist stereotype of all Asians as high achievers. This study has presented a multi-layered perspective of how middle class Chinese and Vietnamese American immigrant parents capitalize on specialized academic programs. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A