Academic journal article Phi Delta Kappan

Emerging Leader

Academic journal article Phi Delta Kappan

Emerging Leader

Article excerpt

When Yolanda Abel was a classroom teacher, she realized that the way to help children is to help their parents, especially if those parents are only teenagers. But she soon found that the conversations were focused mostly around mothers and children--fathers were absent.

"Fathers are involved, and we don't want to forget about that," said Abel, an assistant professor at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore and a member of the 2009-10 PDK Class of Emerging Leaders. "That's what led me to look at African-American fathers' involvement in their children's school-based lives."

Through her research, Abel also reaffirmed another reason for wanting a child to succeed in school, a reason that goes beyond wanting them to have better postsecondary choices and to be proud of their accomplishments. That child might someday be a father. And fathers who had better school experiences are more likely to have better relationships with the mothers of their children and are more likely to be involved in their children's school lives. …

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