ERIC Number: EJ1092938
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Mar
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Do We Value Caring?
Weissbourd, Richard; Anderson, Trisha Ross
Educational Leadership, v73 n6 p54-58 Mar 2016
When asked about their child-rearing priorities, parents in the United States are likely to say it's more important to raise children who are caring than to raise high achievers. Schools, too, typically trumpet values such as caring, honesty, and fairness. These values are posted on walls, reiterated in assemblies, and included in mission statements. But recent research by the authors suggests a troubling reality: There's a large gap between the values parents and teachers espouse and the messages they actually convey to children. A survey of 10,000 diverse middle school and high school students across the United States found that they were more likely to value high achievement and personal happiness above caring for others--and they were convinced their parents and teachers felt the same. In extensive interviews and observations, Weissbourd and Anderson have observed that parents and teachers frequently send powerful messages about the importance of achievement and happiness, drowning out their messages about concern for others. In this article, they suggest strategies for creating a schoolwide and classroom culture in which caring is a clear priority.
Descriptors: Caring, Child Rearing, High Achievement, Institutional Mission, Parent Attitudes, Values, Teacher Attitudes, Psychological Patterns, Observation, Interviews, Student Surveys, Middle School Students, High School Students, School Culture, Educational Environment, Student Attitudes, Academic Achievement
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools; High Schools
Authoring Institution: N/A