Videos

When Teens Lose Trust in Their Teachers

January 2018

ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — A new set of studies from the University of Texas at Austin, Columbia University, and Stanford University finds that some minority students who mistrust school authorities during the middle school years may disengage from school, and this can lead to a ripple effect of school and discipline problems.

Is your child losing interest in school? A new set of longitudinal studies might explain why. In one of the studies, 277 white and African-American students were surveyed and followed from sixth grade to college entry. The study found that through middle school, some African-American students perceived more bias in how schools disciplined students and lost more trust than their white peers. Similar results were reported in a second survey of 206 Latino and white students. The unfair treatment minority students perceived may have undermined their trust that all students would be treated fairly, and may explain why they were more likely to get into trouble at school and less likely to enroll in a four-year college.

As schools consider ways to ensure fair treatment, one study found a gesture of trust and respect could go a long way toward keeping kids engaged. In a study of 88 seventh grade African-American and white students, 25 percent of the students received a hand-written note from their teacher that implied the teacher believed in them. The African-American students who received the note had fewer disciplinary incidents and were more likely to go to college than their peers who did not receive a hand-written note.

The authors of the studies suggest that for white students a loss of trust or a poor relationship with a teacher might be only a temporary setback, and that teacher trust and respect was not a predictor of college entry for white students as it was for minority students.

Contributors to this news report include: Cyndy McGrath, Supervising Producer; Milvionne Chery, Producer; Roque Correa, Editor.

Produced by Child Trends News Service in partnership with Ivanhoe Broadcast News and funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation. 


Spanish Translation

ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — Un estudio conjunto de las Universidades de Texas en Austin, Columbia y Stanford demuestra que algunos estudiantes minoritarios que desconfían de las autoridades escolares durante la secundaria pueden desconectarse de los estudios, algo que puede traer problemas de conducta y aprendizaje.

¿Su hijo está perdiendo interés en el colegio? Una serie de nuevos estudios pudiera explicar el por que. 277 estudiantes blancos y Afro Americanos participaron en un estudio desde el sexto grado hasta el momento de entrar en la universidad. Se determino que, durante la secundaria, más estudiantes minoritarios se sintieron discriminados y perdieron fe en el sistema que sus compañeros de escuela blancos. En un segundo análisis de 206 estudiantes blancos e Hispanos, los resultados fueron similares. Esta sensación de injusticia que sintieron los estudiantes minoritarios pudiera haberles llevado a perder la confianza en que todos serian tratados por igual, y explicaría por qué eran más propensos a verse en problemas, y había menos probabilidades de que asistieran a una universidad de cuatro años.

Sin embargo, con un poco de estímulo por parte de los maestros, el resultado puede ser muy diferente. En un estudio en que participaron 88 alumnos de séptimo grado blancos y Afro Americanos, un 25 por ciento de los estudiantes recibieron una nota escrita a mano por su profesor, en la que expresaba su confianza en ellos.

Los estudiantes Afro Americanos que recibieron la misiva presentaron menos problemas de disciplina y más probabilidades de llegar a la universidad.

Según los autores del estudio, para los estudiantes blancos, perder la fe en un maestro, o una relación negativa con un profesor puede representar un retraso temporal, y el nivel de confianza y respeto en los maestros no era una guía para su futuro universitario, como en el caso de los estudiantes minoritarios.

Los contribuyentes a este reportaje incluyen: Cyndy McGrath, Supervisora; Milvionne Chery; Productora de Campo; Roque Correa, Editor.

Producido por Child Trends News Service en asocio con Ivanhoe Broadcast News y auspiciado por una beca de la National Science Foundation.