Over the Ivy Walls: The Educational Mobility of Low-Income Chicanos

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SUNY Press, Jan 1, 1995 - Education - 151 pages
Unique among literature on minority and Chicano academic achievement, Over the Ivy Walls focuses on factors that create academic successes rather than examining school failure. It weaves existing research on academic achievement into an analysis of the lives of 50 low-income Chicanos for whom schooling "worked" and became an important vehicle for social mobility. Gándara examines their early home lives, school experiences, and peer relations in search of clues to what "went right."

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The Study
Home Influences
Family Stories as Cultural Capital
Schools and Neighborhoods
Personal Attributes and Individual Differences
The Women
Summary and Conclusions
Lessons for School Reform

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Page 8 - Mexicano," as opposed to the referants "Chicano" or "Mexican American," and characterized themselves as more closely linked to the parental culture, were among the most successful in school. As Portes and Zhou note: Children of non-white immigrants may not even have the opportunity of gaining access to middle-class white society, no matter how acculturated they become. Joining those native circles to which they do have access may prove a ticket to permanent subordination and disadvantage.
Page 7 - ... and skills that are passed from one generation to another. Schools reward the cultural capital of the dominant classes (and, by association, that of the Anglo majority) and devalue that of the lower classes and ethnic minorities.
Page 8 - Otherwise, assimilation may not be into mainstream values and expectations but into the adversarial stance of impoverished groups confined to the bottom of the new economic hourglass. The picture is painted in such stark terms here for the sake of clarity, although in reality things have not yet become so polarized. Middle-level occupations requiring relatively modest educational achievements have not completely vanished. By 1980, skilled bluecollar jobs — classified by the US...

About the author (1995)

Patricia Gandara is Associate Professor of Education at University of California, Davis.

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