Date of Conferral
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
A decline in parent participation in one impoverished Pre-K through Grade 5 school in Texas over recent years has been an ongoing concern for school administrators. The purpose of this instrumental case study was to investigate parent perceptions of the school's efforts to involve parents in the school. Research questions focused on identifying factors that inhibited parental involvement concentrating on parent perceptions of school efforts. Constructivist theory and the advocacy/liberatory framework formed the conceptual framework for this study. A triangulation method for data collection included parent interviews, teacher questionnaires, and observations of parental involvement activities over 12 weeks. Participants were a typical sampling of 9 teachers and 9 parents. Observations were logged and coded. Teacher questionnaires were thematically coded and used to create probing questions for parent interviews. Interview transcripts were coded, and member checks validated findings. Results indicated that school practices for parent involvement were unclear to parents, inconsistently implemented, and poorly communicated. Parents reported that consistent communication and encouragement could help break down barriers to participation. As a result of these findings, a parental involvement project was formulated including research based goals, a plan for implementation, and a program evaluation. These findings and proposed project could lead to positive social change by assisting local staff to design a parental involvement program that gives parents a voice in school practices and by providing a model for other schools struggling to involve parents.