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Does teacher educational training help the early math skills of English language learners in Head Start?


  • Kim, Sunha
  • Chang, Mido
  • Kim, Heejung


To address the early performance gap between native-born and immigrant children and to seek ways to reduce the disparity, the study explored the effect of teacher qualification on early math skills of preschoolers, with focused attention to immigrant children. Particularly, the study examined the effects of teacher educational levels, certification, and professional training, by employing Hierarchical Linear Modeling (HLM) analysis to a US nationally representative database from the Head Start Family and Child Experiences (FACES). The study found a significantly positive effect of teacher qualification for immigrant preschoolers in Head Start, who displayed lower early math skills than their native-born counterparts. Among immigrant preschoolers, those who were with teachers of lower educational levels showed significantly lower early math skills compared with their immigrant peers with teachers of higher educational levels. The study also supported teacher certification and professional training as potential mediators in promoting early math competency of immigrant students, especially with teachers of lower educational levels.

Suggested Citation

  • Kim, Sunha & Chang, Mido & Kim, Heejung, 2011. "Does teacher educational training help the early math skills of English language learners in Head Start?," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 732-740, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:cysrev:v:33:y:2011:i:5:p:732-740

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Getinet Astatike Haile & Anh Ngoc Nguyen, 2007. "Determinants of academic attainment in the United States: A quantile regression analysis of test scores," Education Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 16(1), pages 29-57.
    2. William T. Gormley, 2008. "The Effects of Oklahoma's Pre-K Program on Hispanic Children," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 89(4), pages 916-936.
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