Parental involvement in English as foreign language learners’ education: Challenges and solutions in a post-pandemic era
The role played by English language young learners’ parents in enhancing literacy skills has become central since the outbreak of COVID-19 which imposed the online mode of education. This increase in the magnitude of the parents’ involvement in their children's education has called for the exploration of the new role mandated on the parents to take the lead in their children's learning of English. The current study seeks to investigate the challenges, solutions and recommendations as seen through the lens of 28 parents of elementary school children in the UAE who reflected on their role in improving their children's performance in the English language subject during and after the pandemic. Data was collected using semi-structured interviews that consisted of three main questions on the parents’ challenges, solutions and suggestions regarding their involvement. The study adopted a mixed method approach that incorporated Grounded Theory Approach for the qualitative data, and descriptive statistics for the quantitative data. Findings show that most parents indicated that the most significant challenges they had were their lack of English proficiency and their children's lack of motivation. The strategies that were implemented by the parents were mainly using audio-visual resources and hiring tutors. On the other hand, they suggested that teachers and schools should provide support for the children and the parents. The implications of the study are significant for language educators, policymakers, and parents. For example, the findings of the study show that there should be a division of labour between schools, teachers and parents by having schools provide training for the parents, and effectively communicate with them. Curriculum developers should design content that targets the children's independent learning.
Murshidi, Ghadah Al
Derei, Ruwaya Al