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Citation:Catsambis, S., & Garland, J. E. (1997). Parental involvement in students' education during middle school and high school (CRESPAR Report 18). Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University. ED423328.

The purpose of the study is to analyze parent involvement patterns for children who remained in school until 12th grade. Researchers found that parent involvement did not decline but rather shifted over time, with some activities increasing from grade eight through twelve. As students got closer to high school graduation, parents were less involved with the behaviors of students and focused more attention on their students' learning opportunities. Educational expectations increased. Parents reported an increase in communication and volunteering, and expressed dissatisfaction with their role, especially the lack of invitations for involvement in setting school policy. Parents of seniors reported more contacts by the school about their teensÕ academic program and about doing volunteer work. In addition, parents of seniors were more likely to initiate communication with teachers than were parents of eighth graders. Analyses showed patterns of clear and consistent differences by ethnicity in ways parents are involved in their studentsÕ education. Researchers tracked parent reports on the National Education Longitudinal Study (NELS:88) Base Year and Second Follow-up Parent Surveys. Results challenged conventional wisdom that school-family-community partnership activities decline or disappear in high school. Further research needs to examine the degree to which these differences are due to factors such as student achievement, parent educational level, and socioeconomic status.

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