Document Type



Doctor of Education


Educational Leadership

First Adviser

White, George P.

Other advisers/committee members

Evans Stout, Karen; Johnson, Heather B.; Manz, Patricia


This study used qualitative interviews to explore and describe the perceptions of Latino and Puerto Rican parents in a community middle school about if, why, and how Latino families decide to engage in their children's schooling. All 15 Latino parents perceived that they held or shared responsibility with the school for their child's educational success (parent or partnership-focused). Parents reported involvement despite their perceptions of low levels of knowledge and skills, and/or time and energy. Parents responded to school, teacher, and student invitations for involvement; however, no parent described the school as a community school and few parents reported teacher invitations. Parents reported much more home-based involvement than school-based involvement. All parents reported talking to their children in ways that communicated values, goals, expectations, or aspirations, yet only one parent reported planning for post-secondary education. Implications for further research with Latino parents and school practice are presented.