Dissertation Defense – Souraya Mansour
Language and Literacy Multilevel Constructs in Young Nonmainstream American English Speakers
by Souraya Mansour
According to the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP, 2011), children from race and language minority groups continue to perform significantly lower than their peers on reading achievement tests. Current perspectives suggest that multiple factors (e.g., household income, parent education) likely contribute to the achievement gap between African American children and their White peers and children from low income and middle income households (Barton & Coley, 2010; Chatterji, 2006; Jencks & Phillips, 1998), leading to multiple approaches (e.g., Head Start Early Reading First) to prevent or alleviate the trend (Barnett, Coralon, Filzgerald, & Squires, 2011). However, African American children continue to perform lower than their White peers, and continue to be over-represented in special services. It has become increasingly important to understand the contribulors to variance in early reading development among African American children. The purpose of this study was to provide a descriptive view of early language and literacy among typically developing children in prekindergarten who speak Non mainstream American English at child and classroom levels.