Barriers to family involvement in schools : exploring the voice of the urban, high poverty family

Date of Award


Degree Name

Ed.S. in School Psychology


Department of Counselor Education & Human Services


Advisor: Susan Davies


Students typically reach higher levels of success academically when their parents are involved in the educational process. The purpose of this study was to explore the barriers that prevent the participation of impoverished, inner-city families in their children's education. Using semi-structured interviews, eight parents from an urban school district in the Midwestern United States were interviewed. Results demonstrated that economic factors, times constraints, communication, and institutional environments were barriers for the families. Other themes emerged, including: a) families expressing in unison that they wanted their children to complete their school careers with the necessary skills to be productive citizens, b) families expected schools and educators to partner with them in providing their children the academic skills required to reach their full potential, and c) families were inclined to utilize technology, such as e-mail, to be involved in their children's schools. Implications for educators are discussed.


Low-income parents United States Interviews, Education Parent participation United States Interviews, Poor children Education United States, Urban schools United States, Educational Psychology, Counseling Education, Special Education, Teacher Education, Preschool Education, Psychology, Urban educators increasing parent involvement, increasing parent involvement in school, high poverty parent, Low income family involvement, Parent involvement in urban education, Barriers to family involvement, Parent involvement in schools

Rights Statement

Copyright 2016, author