The inaugural issue of the Journal of Family Diversity in Education (JFDE) is the culmination of our work and the work of others who are attempting to shine light upon and oppose hegemonic conceptions of families, particularly in the domain of family-school-community partnerships. The journal is the peer-reviewed, international research journal of the Family Diversity Education Council and is hosted by Kent State University.
Over the last several decades, a body of research has emerged that focuses on home-school-community relationships, yet much of that work is built upon the premise that the term “family” has a common meaning. For scholars and practitioners who are working to analyze, critique, and redefine current notions of family and the resultant implications for those partnerships, there are very few outlets for publication. The JFDE provides a forum for researchers and professionals who are working alongside the vastly different forms of family that exist in schools today to renegotiate the very relationships within family–school-community partnerships. This, in turn, will positively impact and transform curricula, pedagogy, and policy.
Here in the JFDE, we seek interdisciplinary scholarship that extends the dialogue around issues of family diversity and equity in family-school-community partnerships. We view this journal as a space where the voices of educators, counselors, social workers, policymakers, parents and custodial family members, and advocates for children will be in conversation to work toward more inclusive curricula and schooling. As editors, we are pleased to offer a fully refereed, online journal that welcomes diverse and creative theoretical and methodological approaches.
Each issue of the Journal of Family Diversity in Education will contain articles and book reviews. In this first issue, Dr. Janice Kroeger reflects upon several concerns related to parent engagement policies and laws affecting school-home relationships in the United State of America that emerged at the turn of the Century.
Through three ethnographic case studies, Dr. Michael Evans, explores how diverse families are turning to community-based organizations to support their child’s education. Evans uncovers parent motivations for participating in community-based organizations as well as the processes used by the three community-based organizations to determine their shared actions
Dr. Debbie Pushor, through sharing her narrative inquiry work with preservice teachers, challenges us to consider offering a curriculum of parents at the university level. She contends that a curriculum of parents provides preservice teachers with opportunities to interrupt the discourses that currently surround teacher identities and create possibilities for reconstructing new teacher life narratives.
Dr. Jeremy Garcia’s work, reminds us about the importance of uncovering indigenous notions of family and community in our schools through the use of a theoretical framework guided by Tribal Critical Race Theory.
This issue also contains two book reviews that highlight the ways that caregivers and teachers can learn from and with diverse families.
In this inaugural issue, we have brought together voices from different theoretical and methodological perspectives to highlight the ways in which scholarship around notions of family is expanding. We are excited about the path this research is taking and look forward to continuing this rigorous exchange of ideas. We believe that sharing such research will lead to new insights and provide better educational and experiential outcomes for all children and youth.
Monica Miller Marsh, Tammy Turner-Vorbeck
Kent State University & Purdue University &
Family Diversity Education Council Family Diversity Education Council