School Psychology Forum

General Issue
Volume 12, Issue 4 (Winter 2018)

Editor: Oliver Edwards

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  • The Unintended Consequences of High-Stakes Testing on English-Language Learners: Implications for the Practice of School Psychology

    By Chieh Li, Louis J. Kruger, Margaret Beneville, Edward Kimble & Kalyani Krishnan

    pp. 79–90

    ABSTRACT: English-language learners (ELLs) are at a high risk for academic failure, including the failure to pass high-stakes tests such as high school exit exams. Failure on these exams can affect their future career trajectory and have negative impacts on their self-efficacy and emotional well-being. These students’ disproportionate failure rate on high-stakes tests is a neglected but important social justice issue in school psychology. In this article, we explore how school psychologists may address this issue in the multitiered system of supports to help ELLs and their families cope with the unintended, negative consequences of high-stakes tests. Based on research, we propose evidence-based interventions for each tier and provide cultural and linguistic considerations for implementing interventions with respect to academic skills, social–emotional coping skills, a strong family–school collaboration, and the advocacy of ELLs’ educational needs.

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  • Family Structures, Family Relationship, and Children's Perceptions of Life Satisfaction

    By Olivia Hayles, Lihua Xu & Oliver W. Edwards

    pp. 91–104

    ABSTRACT: Children’s family structures are increasingly diverse and changing, and family structure and stability have implications for child developmental outcomes. These increasing distinct structures include households where children reside with grandparents or foster parents. Gaps exist in the knowledge base regarding whether these children report differing degrees of family connectedness and life satisfaction (LS) compared with children residing with one or both parents. This study examines family structures and children’s perceptions regarding family connectedness and perceived LS using a nationally representative U.S. sample of 926 students in grades 7–10. Univariate analysis of variance and hierarchical multiple regression tests were conducted. The findings indicate children residing with both parents have significantly higher LS than children in foster care and children raised by grandparents (CRBG). The findings also reveal that the stronger the feelings of family connectedness, the higher the perceived LS. Perhaps the single most noteworthy finding of this research is that when family connectedness is strong, children with 1 parent have significantly higher perceptions of LS than children living in foster care and CRBG. Thus, this research suggests many children of single parents experience robust psychological well-being. Children in foster care and CRBG may benefit from focused prevention and intervention to enhance family connectedness and LS.

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