This lecture will draw on research projects conducted over the last twelve years, involving families from different social class and ethnic groups. It explores factors identified in current policy, media and other social and political forums as the risks and responsibilities of contemporary parenting, with a particular focus on parents' engagement with schooling and teachers. It argues that there is a fundamental need for researchers and practitioners to deconstruct common sense understandings of what constitutes 'good' parental behaviour in relation to schools and other educational settings, and instead to seek to engage with the diversity of perspectives which families from different social class and ethnic groups bring to the education of their children, and the differential resources with which they equip those children.
Institute of Education Press
Responsibilities, risks and respect
Education & Reference