The Academic Adaptation of Children of Immigrants in New and Traditional Settlement States: The Role of Family, Schools and Neighborhoods

Stephanie Potochnick, University of Missouri, Columbia

This paper examines one of the most pressing challenges facing the educational system: the diaspora of immigrant families. To assess how this geographic dispersion of immigrants affects the education of immigrants’ children, I evaluated how settlement location in new, traditional, and other immigrant states affected academic achievement in math and reading for a national sample of 10th grade youth and whether these effects differed for each immigrant generation and for each racial/ethnic sub-group of the immigrant generations. I also assessed how socio-demographic, family, school, and neighborhood characteristics affected the relationship between settlement location and achievement. Results indicate that achievement is highest in new immigrant states but that achievement differences varied by immigrant generation and racial/ethnic groups. While demographic differences between settlement locations largely explained differences in student achievement, families and schools in new immigrant states also strongly influenced academic achievement.

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Presented in Poster Session 8