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SAN ANTONIO SCHOOLS CULTURAL DIVERSITY

Introduction

Socioeconomic Status Factor

In addition to the factor of race/ethnicity, this project seeks to examine the potential influence of socioeconomic background of students on learning and literacy, with particular emphasis on students from economically disadvantaged households, as well as special education needs. There have been a number of research studies to emerge in recent years that focus specifically on one of these factors, although the issue of socioeconomic background has been more prominent within available literature. In particular, a number of researchers have postulated that socioeconomic background can impact student learning and academic performance in a profound way. Within these studies, researchers put forward evidence suggesting that children from economically disadvantaged households generally exhibit academic performance that is lower than peers that come from more economically stable households. A general consensus appears to have emerged among academics and researchers that students of poor economic means require additional educational assistance and support in order to ensure adequate academic performance as the student moves through compulsory education and into post-secondary education. Ultimately, the focus of this study will be directed toward English skills and English language proficiency. In particular, experience as an international student who has had to learn English as a second language, this researcher has a first-hand understanding of the challenges and difficulties that English language learners must overcome in order to gain the critical English language skills needed to succeed in college-level coursework. This experience has helped to develop increasing interest in exploring the various factors that can affect English language learners achievement of English language proficiency prior to completion of high school and before moving on to post-secondary school.

By using quantitative data and statistical analysis, this study will be able to identify problems or contributing factors that can affect English language learners’ obtain English proficiency. In the end it is expected that identifying factors that can influence ELL obtain English proficiency will facilitate the development of potential solutions to enhance English language performance among high school students preparing to pursue a post-secondary education. In the end, the combination of data resulting from this review of literature and the data yielded through the independent study will provide this researcher with the necessay tools to effectively respond to the research question that has been established to guide this study.

Research Question

Based on the discussion outlined within the preceding sections, the research question that will serve as the primary focus for this study is as follows:

How does race/ethnicity and socioeconomic status affect the performance of Bexar County high school’s English language learners in English language literacy?