Gender and the Effects of School, Family, and Church Support on the Academic Achievement of African-American Urban Adolescents.
MAVIS G. SANDERS Johns Hopkins University
JERALD R. HERTING University of Washington
This study examines the effects of gender on the relationships between institutional support, school-related attitudes and behaviors, and academic achievement for 826 African-American adolescents in an urban school district in the southeastern United States. The results of regression and interview analyses suggest that the school, family, and church simultaneously influence academic achievement through their effects on academic self-concept and school behavior, even when controlling on background characteristics of students. Differences between the male and female populations exist. These differences appear to be related primarily to the attributes female African-American adolescents bring to school relative to males (e.g., more parental support or more church involvement), as opposed to strong differences in the effects of these attributes on the attitudinal and behavioral variables tested, and their relationship to academic achievement. This study's findings are discussed relative to improving the educational experience of male and female AfricanAmerican urban youth through school, family, and community partnerships.
Over the past two decades, educators and social scientists have challenged assumptions of homogeneity among African-American youth (see Consortium for Research on Black Adolescence, 1990). Research studies