Girl power: The impact of an academic and social support program on the educational outcomes of urban seventh and eighth grade Latinas
McGreevy, Sarah Anne
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This study investigated the outcomes of Girl Power , an educational and social support program for 7 th and 8 th grade Latinas. An urban elementary school partnered with a college, a community agency, and a women's organization to increase the academic achievement and school engagement of 23 at-risk Latinas. Preservice teachers provided tutoring in Mathematics and English Language Arts, and school and agency staff facilitated a weekly support group that worked to build community and address barriers to educational success. Although participants reported that Girl Power positively impacted them, and demonstrated short-term increases in academic self concept, compared to controls, they did not demonstrate significant improvement in standardized test scores or grades. Also, there were no significant changes in measures of attitudes toward school, or in attendance or suspension rates. Lack of positive outcomes appeared to be related to improper program implementation stemming from challenges associated with school-university-community partnerships. Implications of these findings for the development of effective partnerships and provision of successful interventions are discussed.