Parental involvement in preschool education
Alhashem, Ebtehal Hussain
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ABSTRACT School education is a complex process with many different factors involved in providing a suitable environment for students to learn. Teachers, schools, administrators, and curriculum are critical in helping students improve academic performance. One of the factors that has a positive impact on improving students’ learning performance is parental involvement. The importance of this aspect has been discussed many times by researchers in the field of education. Although the importance of parental involvement is widely acknowledged in the educational community, most of the teachers that answered the study questionnaire pointed out that many parents do not get involved effectively in their children’s education. The purpose of this study was to investigate the points of view of teachers and parents toward parental involvement in preschool education. Furthermore, this study explored teachers’ expectations from parents and the kind of relationships that both parents and teachers wish to have with each other. This study focused on the difficulties that prevent both American and international parents from getting involved in their children’s education. In addition, the aim of this study was to help teachers and administrators provide activities that encourage parents to participate in children’s school activities. This study was conducted in rural west Texas, and the data was collected via questionnaires, interviews, and archival data. The participants were 20 American parents from one school, five preschool teachers from three schools, and 10 international parents who have children in preschool. The results showed that teachers and American parents want open communication with each other and they prefer using email and text messages to communicate with one another. Also, most American parents mentioned that they did not receive feedback from teachers after participating in their children’s school activities. The main reason that prevents American parents from participating in school activities is their work schedule. In addition, the results showed that international parents are less likely to participate in the school’s cultural events, such as Halloween and Christmas.