Almost all schooling in the United States of America is taught for english-speaking students. Classes are taught in english, homework is assigned in english and parents are communicated with via english. Many students whose first language is not english, fall behind with this model. They are confused in the classroom and their parents are unable to help them because they cannot communicate with the teachers. This creates an obvious inequity. For immigrant students and parents, language is not the only barrier preventing engagement. Cultural differences lead to a disconnection on expectations from both parties and thus further the initiation of a conversation. Parental engagement is a crucial aspect of child success, they can offer a lived experience of the child at home and help create a community within the school.
Why New York City?
New York City is home to 3.1 million immigrants and many of these immigrant students attend underserved and underfunded urban schools. New York City has the highest influx of immigrants each year and many urban schools have to work with students from all different cultures. Immigrants also have the highest drop-out rates in public New York City schools. Although there are many factors that contribute to this, familial participation is one of the most important.