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Teachers’ perspectives on communication and parent engagement in early childhood education programs for migrant farmworker children


As early childhood education programs in the United States increasingly serve a growing number of children from linguistically and culturally diverse families, understanding teacher practices to better serve these families continues to be an important focus for the profession. In programs that serve migrant farmworker families, little is known about teachers’ communication practices and ways in which teachers promote parent engagement with migrant farmworker families. This article explores the practices of teachers relevant to family communication and engagement in Migrant and Seasonal Head Start programs, a branch of Head Start program for farmworker families, mostly of Mexican origin. This study used qualitative methods of in-depth interviews and a focus group to bring forth the perspectives and lived experience of Spanish-speaking and English-speaking teachers working with farmworker families in the Great Lakes region of the United States. Key findings illustrate the role of shared language and culture, mediated language barriers, the reliability of interpreters and written communication, and authentic ways of creating home–school connections with the migrant farmworker community. (author abstract)

Resource Type:
Reports & Papers
United States

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