To gain more insight on the acculturation process we need to look further at the aspect of ‘a culture of failure’ and where this truly comes from, specifically student’s attitudes towards education. Is this connected to the “lax” attitude of America, the change of discipline, a cultural manifestation, or something else? Also, the trust of the school system and it’s administrators. Does the strength of the one's cultural identity influence how one trusts the American school system, its leaders, the special education realm, and the act of disciplining misbehavior in a child? In the end does this affect the way a teacher teaches, the way a principal manages, the way a parent interacts with the school, and the way a student learns?
“New York City is a moving, busy city where ethnicity never really melts away, and class and generation differences remain visible” ( Bryce-Laporte, 1979). Mitchell and Bryan discuss the need for Caribbean immigrant students to be given school intervention that is compatible with their familial and cultural values. They go on to say “school counselors must team and collaborate with family, community, and school staff members to develop and implement comprehensive programs of partnerships to meet the needs of students at risk for academic failure, many of whom are minority and immigrant students” (2007). This is a critical component going forward, but stereotyping one nation's citizens or immigrant population will counteract the individual interventions – cultural values may be consistent but how students incorporate those into their new setting will be different. A child may react to the acculturation process in a variety of ways, depending on the strength of their values, acceptance of change, self-esteem, and influence of peers. This needs to be incorporated into professional development for teachers, counselors, and school officials.
The stress of immigrating to a new country increases when the community in which the immigrant is now living is uneducated on potential challenges in acculturation. Understanding they might not understand special education to its fullest extent requires someone to discuss the process with them. Understanding how misbehavior is handled differently will reduce the discrepancies and potentially smooth the transition for the child. Understanding the cultural values and family expectations of new families could bridge the disconnect of parents and schools, resulting in trust and acceptance of the school system, its curriculum and methods. The implications here allow administrators, teachers, and other school staff to begin to take the necessary steps to incorporate immigrants more justly and allow them an equal opportunity to succeed within education and personally. Overall talk to these families, learn from them.
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Middle School SpEd teacher, maze designer, tech club director, social media seeker, idealist, avid volunteer, sports/tv addict, living the moment