Title: Family Involvement in Education: A Synthesis of Research for Pacific Educators.
Author: Onikama, Denise L.; Hammond, Ormond W.; Koki, Stan
Publication Information: Pacific Resources for Education and Learning, Suite 2500, 1099 Alakea Street, Honolulu, HI 96813; phone: 808-533-6000; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; World Wide Web: http://www.prel.hawaii.edu
ERIC number: ED420446
Abstract: This report examines family involvement in elementary and secondary education, focusing on special concerns for schools in Hawaii and the Pacific Islands. The report identifies barriers to family involvement found among culturally diverse populations and suggests positive directions aimed at overcoming those barriers. Following an introduction, the report discusses the numerous components of family involvement and notes that family, school, and community are three major interrelated spheres of influences on a child's life that can work toward academic success or impede progress. Barriers among culturally diverse populations are described, including prior history of discrimination, generational differences in acculturation, language differences and misconceptions about school, teachers' beliefs and attitudes, and issues of community identity. Barriers posing unique challenges for educators in the Pacific Islands include the lack of a clear definition of family involvement, issues related to the schooling process, cultural barriers, religious priorities, and a belief in the separation of school and home. The report identifies positive directions in family involvement efforts nationwide, including the priority placed on family involvement in the U.S. National Education Goals and the empowerment model to provide an organizational structure for parent involvement programs. Positive directions in the Pacific are presented, including the support for site-based management and the development of a network of parent-community networking centers. The report concludes with recommendations related to emphasizing the value of family involvement in education, identifying relevant barriers to family involvement, seeking culturally appropriate solutions, and using professional development opportunities to enhance family involvement. (Contains 41 references.) (KB)