Tangles and Glimmers: How African Immigrant Students in an Urban Charter School Describe Congruencies and Disconnections in Caring Between Home and School

Abstract

Misalignments in caring between home and school can often be a source of alienation for minoritized students. This study explores how African immigrant middle school students at an urban K-8 charter school experience congruencies and disconnections in caring practice between home and school. The school is academically successful and shares some characteristics with “no excuses” charter schools, but also emphasizes identity exploration and anti-discrimination in their curriculum. Student photographs of school spaces form an important part of the data for this study, so that students could speak about caring in their own grounded and everyday terms. The study highlights that many interpersonal and intrapersonal aspects of caring are similar between home and school, but that gaps in care were often linked to organizational expectations and practices. Scholars and practitioners interested in stronger connections between home and school in caring practice must focus not only on relationships, but also on whether schools are organized in ways that feel familiar and supportive to students.

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Correspondence to Jeff Walls.

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Walls, J. Tangles and Glimmers: How African Immigrant Students in an Urban Charter School Describe Congruencies and Disconnections in Caring Between Home and School. Urban Rev (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11256-021-00597-z

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Keywords

  • Caring
  • African immigrant students
  • Home/school relationships
  • Charter schools