Academic journal article International Education Studies

Modeling the Relations among Parental Involvement, School Engagement and Academic Performance of High School Students

Academic journal article International Education Studies

Modeling the Relations among Parental Involvement, School Engagement and Academic Performance of High School Students

Article excerpt


The author proposed a model to explain how parental involvement and school engagement related to academic performance. Participants were (671) 9th and 10th graders students who completed two scales of "parental involvement" and "school engagement" in their regular classrooms. Results of the path analysis suggested that the parental involvement influences school engagement directly. Also, parental involvement influences academic performance indirectly through its effects on school engagement. In addition, school engagement influences academic performance directly.

Keywords: parental involvement, school engagement, academic performance, high school students

1. Introduction

School engagement is considered one of the most important factors that affect students' learning and academic success. Specifically, it is considered the main model for understanding and predicting graduation of students from high school (Fall & Roberts, 2012). Previous studies have found that students who are careful to attend all of their classes, concentrate on learning, and obey the schools' rules and regulations, generally achieve higher grades (Caraway, Tucker, Reinke, & Hall, 2003; Wang & Holcombe, 2010). Additionally, (Finn & Rock, 1997; Moretti, 2007) pointed out that poor school engagement can increase rates of school failure, withdraw, dropout and problematic behavior. Scribner, Young, and Pedroza (1999) indicated that the lack of cooperation among schools and parents causes low achievement and higher behaviors problems rates among students. Moreover, a lot of research indicated that parents involve frequently in their children's education; their children become more socially and academically successful in school (Epstein, 2001; Hill & Craft, 2003; McWayne, Hampton, Fantuzzo, Cohen, & Sekino, 2004). The National Research Council and Institute of Medicine (2004) indicated that 30% to 50% of middle school students are disengaged from school. These findings lead educators and researchers to study school engagement as a solution for many problems.

2. Theoretical Background

Engagement in school activities is considered one important outcome of motivation; when students engage in school, they feel with pleasure, have academic self-efficacy, determine high goals, and volunteer in learning activities as predictive on the high academic achievement. Moreover, previous studies pointed out that school engagement improves academic achievement, higher school completion rates, and increases student sense of connecting in schools and other social institutions (Finn, 1989; Marks, 2000; Pearson, Muller, & Wilkinson, 2007; Willms, 2003). Higher school engagement has been linked with high school graduation and academic success (Furrer & Skinner, 2003). According to Wentzel (1999), students who engage in school activities have high academic performance. In contrast, students who disengage have low academic performance (Finn, Pannozzo, & Voelkl, 1995). Alternatively, studies suggest that students who feel connected to school are more likely to demonstrate positive behaviors and attitudes, while students who feel disconnected to school are more likely to demonstrate antisocial, uncivilized, and violent behaviors both in and out of school (Finn, 2006; Whitlock, 2006).

Engagement is typically described as having multiple components. Based on the theoretical work of Fredrick, Blumenfeld, and Paris (2004), school engagement is a multidimensional construct has three components: behavior, emotion, and cognition. Behavioral engagement refers to the actions and practices that students direct toward school and learning; it includes positive conduct (e.g., students' attendance and completing school activities), active participation in classes, and/or involvement in extracurricular activities (Harris, 2011; Wang, Willett, & Eccles, 2011). Emotional engagement refers to the feelings, interests, and attitudes that students have toward learning and school (Skinner & Belmont, 1993). …

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