Academic achievement; Discrimination in education; High school students; Hispanic Americans; Mexican Americans; Minority students; Teacher-student relationships


A classified ad was printed in a Southern California newspaper requesting Chicanos who attended high school between 1950 and 1980 to discuss their school experiences. Eight interviews were conducted; one participant was a college graduate, two others were high school graduates, and the others dropped out of high school to work or start a family. The interviews illuminated how the educational system, namely teachers’ expectations, affected the academic aspirations and achievements of the participants. Interview results showed that the lack of culturally affirming relationships with teachers hindered most interviewees’ ability to make connections between hard work in school and future social and economic benefits.