Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Lynda Kintz Kintz


A pattern of low parental involvement exists at in an inner-city school in the northeast region of the United States, where 90% of the students are students of color and fewer than 10% of parents attend school-based activities. Low parental involvement at the local school may lead to decreased student achievement and limited access to needed resources and information. A qualitative case study design was used to explore the problem. Epstein's typology, which includes the traditional definition of parental involvement and acknowledges the parents' role in the home, provided the conceptual framework for the study. Research questions focused on perceived challenges that prevent parent participation, specific types of parental involvement strategies that are most effective when working with inner-city families, and potential solutions to the problems. Data collection included reviewing reports and conducting individual interviews with 5 elementary school parents, 5 teachers, and the principal at the research site. Inductive data analysis included organizing and categorizing data to develop themes related to the problem and perceived solutions. Findings revealed ineffective home-school communication, language differences, and a lack of shared meaning regarding parental involvement between parents and teachers. Identification of these challenges led to development of a 3-day professional learning series for parents, teachers, and administrators that focused on benefits of parental involvement. Implementation of the program may help to facilitate building of school-family community partnerships to empower parents to support their children's learning at home and at school.

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