- Educational outcomes and functioning of bi-ethnic Dutch children in school
- Educational Research
- Volume | Issue number
- 57 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Research Institute of Child Development and Education (RICDE)
Background: Changing demographics in societies through international migration have led to an increasing number of bi-ethnic individuals. The focus of this study is on bi-ethnic students with one parent with an ethnic majority background and one parent with an ethnic minority background. Most studies worldwide have grouped these bi-ethnic students with ethnic minority students or have grouped them according to the ethnic background of their mothers with the majority or minority group. However, empirical arguments for these groupings are lacking.
Purpose: The present study examined the educational outcomes and functioning of bi-ethnic students compared with mono-ethnic majority and mono-ethnic minority students in the Netherlands.
Sample: Data on in total 12,841 sixth-grade students (age 11-12) in primary education from two consecutive measurements of the national Dutch cohort study (COOL5-18) were used in this study.
Method: Educational outcomes were measured with test scores on reading comprehension and mathematics. Educational functioning in school was measured with teacher and student questionnaires. Student questionnaires included instruments for well-being of the pupil in relationship with fellow students and citizenship competences. Teachers reported on problem behaviour of the pupils. To analyse the differences in educational outcomes and functioning among bi-ethnic, mono-ethnic minority and mono-ethnic majority students, multivariate, multilevel analyses were performed.
Results: The research findings indicate that bi-ethnic students do not differ from mono-ethnic majority students while they do differ from mono-ethnic minority students in their cognitive achievement, social-emotional functioning and citizenship knowledge. Bi-ethnic students scored higher on cognitive outcomes, social-emotional functioning and citizenship knowledge than mono-ethnic minority students did. For citizenship orientation alone, it was found that bi-ethnic students score in between mono-ethnic majority and mono-ethnic minority students.
Conclusion: This study indicates that researchers should not assume that bi-ethnic students will be similar to mono-ethnic ones.
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