School Engagement and Avoidance among System-Involved Parents with Young Children

How do system-involved parents of young children view, interact, and engage (or not) with schools?

Anna R. Haskins will study whether and how involvement in criminal justice, immigration enforcement, and child welfare systems undermine parental involvement in children’s education. Her study comprises three complementary qualitative projects that will iteratively highlight mechanisms, processes, and meanings that can help explain associations observed in previous quantitative work. The first draws on in-depth interviews from system-involved parents, the second explores the perspectives of school personnel, and the third provides a contextual component by collecting school characteristics data via school observations. Haskins, a quantitative sociologist with expertise in documenting the causal effects of paternal incarceration on children’s education outcomes, will develop qualitative research skills and acquire expertise in immigration enforcement. She will meet regularly with her mentors, Mary Pattillo, the Harold Washington Professor of Sociology and African American Studies at Northwestern University, and Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes, professor and chair of the Department of Economics at San Diego State University. Pattillo will mentor Haskins on qualitative field research methods, and Amuedo-Dorantes will lead Haskins in a directed study on the complexities and consequences of immigration enforcement within the U.S., particularly for children’s schooling.

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