Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal, Vol. 21, No. 1, February 2004 (
Teacher Support and the School Engagement of Latino Middleand High School Students at Riskof School Failure
Ann B. Brewster, Ph.D. andGary L. Bowen, Ph.D.
This investigation examined the effects of social support fromteachers on the school engagement of middle and high school Latino studentsidentified as being at risk of school failure. Regression analyses indicated thatsocial support from teachers is an important factor in affective and behavioralaspects of school engagement. Specifically, teachers exerted an important ef-fect on school engagement, beyond the effect of parental support. This paperdiscusses the implications of these findings for developing more effective drop-out-prevention interventions for Latino students.
Latino Students; Social Support; Teachers; Parents; SchoolEngagement.
Individuals who leave high school without a credential increase theirsusceptibility to many detrimental life outcomes. Compared to highschool graduates, dropouts are more likely to experience unemploy-ment, to receive welfare, to have lower lifetime earning potential, toengage in delinquent or criminal behavior, and to suffer mental healthproblems (NCES, 1996; Rumberger, 1987). The life prospects for highschool dropouts are indeed dismal in a twenty-first-century economy. Although the national high school dropout rate declined steadilyover the past century (NCES, 1999), dropping out remains a problem,
Ann B. Brewster is a postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Cecil G. Sheps Center forHealth Sciences Research, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Gary L. Bowen,Ph.D. is Kenan Distinguished Professor, School of Social Work, University of NorthCarolina at Chapel Hill. Address correspondence to Ann B. Brewster/Gary L. Bowen, School of Social Work,University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 301 Pittsboro Street, CB# 3550, ChapelHill, NC 27599-3550; e-mail: email@example.comfirstname.lastname@example.org.
2004 Human Sciences Press, Inc.