Parent participation in a Cree and Ojibway Head Start program, development of a conceptual framework
Eni Lawrenchuk, Rachel
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The purpose of this study was to explore the perceptions of Cree and Ojibway parents and educators of an Aboriginal Head Start Program regarding parental participation in their children's education. Using a participatory action research approach which allowed for active involvement and reflection, participants discovered strategies to fulfil needs through parent participation. Human ecology theory and teachings of the medicine wheel were found to be helpful in data interpretation, using a grounded theory approach. Findings were collected through interviews, workshops and document review. Components which emerged were incorporated into a parent participation wheel design, composed of parent benefits, care giving role, Aboriginal education, culture, identity and community. Themes which emerged were care giving responsibility, understanding personal and cultural history and a search for meaning. Limitations of the study and implications for further education, research and practice are provided.