Exploring the perspectives on schooling held by teachers' kids who chose not to go to college
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The purpose of this study is to understand why some children of teachers, who, having been brought up in an environment where education is highly valued, nevertheless, choose not to pursue a college education right out of high school. The study focuses on young adults who have at least one parent who is a teacher and who, when they graduated from high school, either chose not to attend college right away or enrolled in college then left within the first few semesters. Through open-ended interview questions, constant comparative qualitative analysis, and narrative analysis, the study examines what impact having a teacher as a parent has had on young adultsÃ¢ÂÂ construction of formal education and their decision to forego higher education immediately after high school. The interviewer also asks the teacher-parents what response they had to that decision. The research questions of this study are as follows: (1) What experiences of education do these young adults, who are teachersÃ¢ÂÂ kids, have? (2) How has their family shaped their understanding of education and their attitudes toward it? (3) How did they choose not to pursue a college degree right out of high school and what meaning do they give to this decision? and (4) What is/was the teacher-parentÃ¢ÂÂs response to this decision? This study illuminates the college decision-making process that young adults go through when they are in an environment in which education is a prominent feature. Two major findings emerge. For the young adults, all valued education but they had no sense of urgency about pursuing formal education immediately. Their decisions were shaped by particular life circumstances and, for many, a belief that a college education was irrelevant at that point in their lives. The second finding concerns the teacher-parents. These educators assumed that their children would go on to college, but they did not pressure them to do so; their primary concern was that their children be happy.
Ganslen, Sharon Marie (2003). Exploring the perspectives on schooling held by teachers' kids who chose not to go to college. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from