The associations among school stratification, racial identity, and future orientation in Black youth

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Kamilah Legette (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Danielle Crosby

Abstract: Schools are one of the largest institutions that perpetuate and maintain the racial and class hierarchy that exists within society (Borman & Dowling, 2010; Borman, Hewes, Overman, & Brown, 2003). School tracking, the division of students into different classes based on perceived ability, is a significant mechanism for stratifying Black and low-income youth into lower academic tracks (Braddock & Slavin, 1992). Considerable research has demonstrated that the overrepresentation of Blacks and low-income youth in lower-academic courses narrows their preparation for future career and schooling opportunities (Oakes, 1986; Tyson, 2013). However, there is limited research that has investigated how Black youth perceive tracking practices and how these perceptions influence the construction of their future orientation. Furthermore, the high representation of Whiteness in high ability courses and the overrepresentation of Blacks in lower-academic courses may influence Black youth ideas about their own and other racial groups impacting their racial identity formation. In efforts to reduce the risk of conflating race and class on Black youth developmental outcomes, this study disentangles race and class by including Black youth from diverse economic and social class positions (Cabrera, 2013). Using a mixed method design, this study investigated Black youth perceptions of tracking practices and how these practices associated with their racial identity and future orientation. In addition, the current study explored the ways economic and social position distinctly associated with Black youth's racial identity and future orientation. It was found that youth's perceptions of tracking were significantly associated with their school stratification position, racial identity, and future orientation in different ways. In addition, it was found that economic and social position did associate in distinct ways with Black youth school tracking placement, racial identity, and future orientation.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2015
Black youth, Future orientation, Racial identity, School tracking
African Americans $x Education $z United States
African American students $x Attitudes
Racism in education $z United States
Discrimination in education $z United States
Academic achievement $z United States

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