The effects of tracking and parental involvement on Latino student success in science at Morgan Senior High School

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2001
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Zuniga, Keren M.
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Winter, Mary
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Abstract
This study is a critical analysis of Iowa Latino and non-Hispanic White student placement in three different high school science tracks. The purpose of this study was to discover whether students were tracked appropriately based on their academic performance and which science track led to student success in science. Using data from student records and six in-depth student interviews it was discovered that Latinos were disproportionately tracked into the lower two science tracks while non-Hispanic White students were disproportionately tracked into the upper track. It was also discovered that the upper track led to the most student success in science for both groups. These findings were put into context with parental involvement and expectations using data from six in-depth Latino student interviews. It was concluded that although Latino parents were involved and valued their student's education it was not enough to counter the negative effects of tracking. Implications of tracking and institutional racism are discussed and recommendations for the high school science program are presented in response to the findings.
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