Relationships and children's schooling in rural northwest China: Teachers', mothers', and children's perspectives
Previous research on educational stratification in rural China has focused mostly on barriers to children's access to schooling. However, we have limited knowledge about many aspects of children's relationships with teachers and parents, and how these relationships may impact children's school achievement and attainment. With almost universal enrollment at the basic education level in China, it has become increasingly important to explore how the interpersonal aspects of children's schooling may lead to disparities in educational outcomes.^ This dissertation analyzes the Gansu Survey of Children and Families, a longitudinal dataset from northwest China. The focus of this study is to examine children's relationships with teachers and mothers, through the perspectives of each group. The first essay focuses on the influence of children's family background on teachers' expectations for children's future education. Analysis reveals that teachers' evaluative opinions of parents' ability and willingness to facilitate children's schooling, above and beyond family socioeconomic status measures, are associated with teachers' evaluations of children's learning capacity and behavior at school, and teachers' educational expectations for children. ^ The second essay tests whether there is disagreement between mothers and children in their expectations of children's future education, and in their interpretations of children's schooling. Results show that there is much discrepancy between mothers' and children's educational expectations, and between mothers' and children's evaluations of children's engagement in school and academic achievement. Both mothers and children's high educational expectations are closely associated with children's subsequent school persistence. ^ The last essay investigates relationships among teachers' and children's educational expectations and children's school achievement. Results show that there is much instability in children's expectations and achievement over time. Results also indicate that teachers' early expectations and evaluations of children have some lagged impact on children's later school achievement. ^ These findings suggest that in rural Gansu, where economic and human resources available to children are still limited, supportive relationships with teachers and close connections with parents are important for children's school achievement and school persistence. Family background may have an indirect impact on children's schooling through influencing children's relationships with teachers and parents. ^
Education, Sociology of|Sociology, General
"Relationships and children's schooling in rural northwest China: Teachers', mothers', and children's perspectives"
(January 1, 2007).
Dissertations available from ProQuest.