ERIC Number: EJ724679
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004
Parents' Attitudes Toward Chinese-English Bilingual Education and Chinese-Language Use
Bilingual Research Journal, v28 n1 p99-121 Spr 2004
This study surveyed 86 parents who enrolled their children in a Chinese-English bilingual preschool in San Francisco. The participants were asked their opinions on bilingual education, the reasons for sending their children to a Chinese-English bilingual school, their attitudes toward bilingual education, their use of Chinese and English, and their expectations for their children and the language environment at home. It was found that parents strongly support Chinese-English bilingual education and understood the purpose and underlying principles of bilingual education. Although there were some differences between the English-dominant and Chinese-dominant parents' responses, the major reasons parents enrolled their children in Chinese-English bilingual school were the practical advantages of being bilingual (e.g., better career opportunities), positive effects on self-image, and development of skills enabling effective communication within the Chinese-speaking community. The majority of the parents intended to encourage their children to speak Chinese at home. However, a gap existed between expectation and actual practice. Parents' expectation of their children's level of Chinese competency varied due to differences in parents' Chinese proficiency and the availability of Chinese resources at home. The results suggest that both English-dominant and Chinese-dominant parents are very supportive of developing bilingualism in their children. The implications of this study for community Chinese heritage language programs and for Chinese-English bilingual schools are that schools need to work in concert with parents to establish more effective home-school partnerships to meet the different language needs and expectations of the parents and students, and to provide students with the necessary language and literacy experiences in a meaningful way.
Descriptors: Parent Attitudes, Employment Opportunities, Bilingualism, Bilingual Education, Chinese, Language Usage, English, Language Dominance, Heritage Education, Parent School Relationship
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A