Black diamonds create black brilliance
Alston, Tasha Latrese
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ABSTRACT African American children continue to underachieve academically and the academic achievement gap between African American students, Latino students and White students continues to persist. America is also becoming significantly more diverse and by 2020 America’s classrooms will be filled with more students of color. If the achievement gap continues to persist and if students of color do not receive the necessary education to compete in the global workforce then America will eventually have a future workforce problem. The literature tells us that parental involvement affects academic achievement. However, much of the literature on parental involvement focuses on the involvement of mother’s with limited information about the involvement of fathers, especially African American fathers. When fathers are included in the literature on parental involvement, they are usually White and middle class. The parental involvement literature on African American fathers is insufficient compared to their White counterparts. African American fathers do not have a “voice” in the literature on parental involvement. In fact, a racial and gender bias exists in the literature on parental involvement that marginalizes the voice of African American fathers. The purpose of this study is to understand the involvement that African American fathers have in their African American children’s education by using Critical Race Theory (hereafter referred to as CRT) as a theoretical framework to privilege the “voice” of African American fathers within the literature on parental involvement. The goal of this study is to better understand African American fathers involvement in their African American children’s education in order to determine how to better engage African American fathers as partners in education. During this qualitative study interviews were conducted to privilege the “voice” of African American fathers through their counterstories. Findings revealed African American fathers are involved in their children’s education, but not in the school.