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Low-income African and Latina immigrant mothers' selection of early childhood care and education (ECCE): Considering the complexity of cultural and structural influences

Resource Type: Reports & Papers
Author(s): Vesely, Colleen K.;
Date Issued: Q3 2013
Description: Grounded in ecocultural theory and utilizing in-depth interview data, this paper explores the experiences of 40 low-income immigrant mothers as they selected and secured early childhood care and education (ECCE) for their young children. Cultural and structural aspects of low-income immigrant families' lives and their influence in shaping these families' ECCE decision-making processes were examined. Latina and African mothers' experiences were considered, as these mothers' country of origin (COO) experiences were varied as well as their documentation statuses upon arrival in the US, with 15 of the Latinas being undocumented. Mothers discussed reasons for seeking ECCE, with maternal employment being most important. Some mothers looked to ECCE to recreate social experiences for their children similar to those in their COOs. Many mothers indicated looking for ECCE programs in which their children could learn English and interact with children from diverse backgrounds. Mothers tended to utilize social and organizational connections to secure ECCE and documentation of residence shaped the number and severity of obstacles mothers faced in securing ECCE. The findings from this study inform researchers, policymakers, and practitioners as to how both culture and structure shape ECCE decision making among low-income African and Latina/o immigrant families. (author abstract)
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Funder(s): United States. Office of Child Care
Journal Title: Early Childhood Research Quarterly
Volume Number: 28
Issue Number: 3
Page Range: 470-486
Topics: Children & Child Development > Children with Special Needs & Special Child Populations > Immigrant, Migrant and Refugee Status

Parents & Families > Selection Of Child Care & Early Education Arrangements
Country: United States
ISSN: 1873-7706 Online
0885-2006 Paper
Peer Reviewed: yes
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