The Educational Experience of Hmong Students at John Muir Elementary
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The story of the Hmong people is a story of facing adversity and adapting to grow as a community and a people. The Hmong students of John Muir Elementary have faced this adversity in their journey to find academic success in the educational landscape of America, in Kirkland, WA. Standardized testing reveals that these Hmong students are struggling to meet academic standards. This study sought to find the educational experience for the Hmong students of John Muir Elementary. To discover what role history and culture from Southeast Asia, home and family support, language, community programs, and academic achievement played in their educational experience. Through interviews of Hmong students at John Muir Elementary I discovered there are numerous unique challenges these students face in their attempt to achieve academic success. The value of education and educational systems were quite different historically for these students and for their families in Southeast Asia. Parents and families are highly supportive of students’ education here at John Muir Elementary; however, parents are often ill-prepared to fully support children with the educational demands and language necessary to meet academic standards. In addition, language development continues to be a major obstacle for Hmong students in achieving Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency in addition to Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills. Furthermore, I discovered there are multiple community programs in place meeting the needs of these students that would great benefit from collaboration with the school and staff. Finally, I learned of the need for concentrated communication with students and families, concerning the assessing and reporting practices, so both students and families understand the academic growth process and necessary steps moving forward. This study concluded that to help Hmong students at John Muir Elementary meet academic standards, consistent collaboration with parents, teachers, students, and community organizations needs to occur to maintain clear understandings of systems and strategies as well as accountability for academic progress.
Four pages of confidential materials were redacted.
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iv, 46 pages
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