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ERIC Number: EJ1045863
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 34
ISSN: ISSN-1068-3844
"Teachers Should Be Like Us!" Bridging Migrant Communities to Rural Michigan Classrooms
Torrez, J. Estrella
Multicultural Education, v21 n3-4 p39-44 Spr-Sum 2014
A brief sketch, as provided by the 2010 Michigan Migrant Head Start Community Assessment, describes Michigan migrant students in the following terms: (1) approximately 17.5% are high school graduates; (2) 92.46% live in homes where Spanish is the preferred language; and (3) 93.3% live below the poverty line. These circumstances create a complicated situation for those students entering rural schools, schools which are not fully equipped to provide sufficient academic support services for migratory families. Such challenges severely inhibit academic success and meaningful community engagement; a positive school experience is stifled when separation between home and school exists (Epstein 1995; Dorries 2002; Olivos, 2009). Using a component of a larger study, this article considers the growing concern to adequately educate the nation's migrant farmworker children by focusing on the Cherryville Summer Migrant Education Program (SMEP) situated in the rural Midwest. The original project investigated accessible solutions connecting migrant and seasonal farmworker (MSFW) communities with rural Midwest summer migrant education program classrooms. Specifically, the project focused on the ways in which the education program supported bilingual/bicultural development. The findings reveal that the struggles encountered by educators and MSFW families were a product of miscommunication, inadequate curriculum support, and a lack of confidence engaging with one another. Furthermore, the study of the Cherryville SMEP found families sensed that school-situated MSFW home pedagogies were inferior when compared to needed academic knowledge. Of particular significance for this article is the discussion around connecting the home to the SMEP that developed in response to concerns raised by the migrant families themselves. This article utilizes personal narratives provided by the migrant community and educators to address issues of staffing, language barriers, and curriculum which rural SMEPs may use to bridge their migrant students.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Michigan