[EDEQUITY Equity Now]Latino community and gender equity

From: Emile Rosenberg (RosenbergE@k12.Waltham.ma.us)
Date: Wed May 29 2002 - 11:16:34 EDT

I am heartened by the work you have described. The Latino community on the
East Coast faces similar challenges of higher than average dropout rates,
lower than average scores on state achievement tests and narrow career
aspirations. On the positive side, the pride our students exhibit in their
language and culture is to be respected and valued. One subtle issue that
has arisen with our immigrant families from most of the Central American
countries is tremendous pressure on our girls to marry young and have
children young (babies having babies). This is a difficult problem which
are trying to address with local community activists, clergy and educators.

Emile Rosenberg
Assistant Superintendent of Waltham Public Schools

From:Josefina V. Tinajero [<tinajero@utep.edu>]
Subject:[EDEQUITY Equity Now] Opening Statement by Josefina V.Tinajero
I'm Josie V. Tinajero, Associate Dean of the College of Education and,
most importantly, Director of the Mother-Daughter Program at the University
Texas at El Paso for the past 15 years. This is a WEEA-funded project
(Educational Enhancement for Mothers and Daughters Program) that addresses
two major barriers to Latinas' participation in higher education: low
educational and career expectations of girls and their mothers and lack of
knowledge about how to prepare for, finance, and succeed in college.
Since 1986, the project has worked with over 3,000 mothers and daughters,
focusing on girls from grade 6 through the freshman year in college (most
intensively with 6th grade girls), instilling in them high aspirations for
educational achievement and career success. Mothers are equal
participants with their daughters, learning how to help their daughters
succeed and advancing themselves educationally and in their jobs. The
Program provides an inspiring example of how young women from low
socioeconomic backgrounds can break educational and career barriers.

The Mother-Daughter Program has made a significant and positive impact on
the lives of thousands of girls and the mothers in the El Paso area. It
has significantly targeted the needs of women living in U.S.-Mexico border
regions where low levels of education; high dropout rates; unemployment or
employment in low paying, dead-end jobs; teen pregnancy; and poverty have
characterized life for many women. By targeting the factors of greatest
needs, as well as creating a supportive network through which women
perceive and understand options for changing their lives, change has been
possible for an ever-increasing number of women. The program has served
as a model for establishing similar programs throughout Texas and

Dr. Josie Villamil Tinajero
Associate Dean, College of Education
The University of Texas at El Paso
500 W. University Avenue
El Paso, Texas 79902

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