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Citation:McWayne, C., Hampton, V., Fantuzzo, J., Cohen, H. L., & Sekino, Y. (2004). A multivariate examination of parent involvement and the social and academic competencies of urban kindergarten children. Psychology in the Schools, 41(3), 363-377.

The purpose of this study is to obtain a multivariate picture of academic parental involvement in kindergarten and to examine the Parent Involvement in Children's Education Scale (PICES; Fantuzzo et al., 2002) with kindergarten children. The Parent Involvement in Children's Education Scale (PICES) is a parent report instrument that presents information on the frequency of specific involvement behaviors across three dimensions: Supportive Home Learning Environment, Direct School Contact, and Inhibited Involvement. Results based on parent and teacher reports indicated an identical pattern of PICES constructs between the kindergarten children in this study and demographically similar preschool children. In addition, results illustrate that involved parents who promote learning at home, have contact with their child's school, and experience fewer barriers to involvement, such as stress and work responsibilities, tended to have children with high levels of social skills, who were more cooperative, self-controlled, and pro-social. Children of more involved parents also demonstrated greater academic motivation and achievement in reading and math. These data were collected from 307 low-income, ethnic minority children and their primary caregivers in a large, urban school district in the Northeast. Participant children were recruited from seven public elementary schools and ranged from five to seven years of age. This study suggests the importance of parental involvement in education for children's success and highlights the problems, especially for low-income minority families, when there are multiple risk factors and barriers to involvement. This study focuses primarily on low-income, urban, African American families and limited social and behavioral outcomes. Future research should focus on a more diverse sample in addition to academic areas relevant to kindergarten children. Though this study focused on a select demographic set of participants, it provides rich contextual information on family involvement and student success. Future research might focus on randomized controlled trials that explore the effectiveness of specific interventions that correlate to the contextual factors identified in this study.

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