Panel: Race, Ethnicity, and Public Policy Analysis: Understanding Deeper Complexities Through Qualitative Research
(Social Equity (includes Ethnicity, Race & Gender))

Friday, November 9, 2012: 8:00 AM-9:30 AM
Adams (Sheraton Baltimore City Center Hotel)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Organizers:  Susan Gooden, Virginia Commonwealth University
Moderators:  Earl Johnson, Administration for Children and Families
Chairs:  Margaret Simms, Urban Institute

Direct analysis of race and/or ethnicity in public policy research is largely understudied and such analysis in quantitative designs is often superficial. Understanding the complexities of race and ethnicity in public policy analysis can be significantly advanced through qualitative research. Each of the three papers on this panel uses qualitative analysis to directly examine race and/or ethnicity in public policy. Through privileging the voices of minority parents, students, and administrators, the papers illuminate complexities associated with student engagement, student success, child support, and incarceration. The presenters also discuss navigating common research challenges in qualitative research designs with a focus on race and/or ethnicity. Such challenges include cultural competency and understanding, data collection techniques, report writing, decision making regarding controversial language and quotes, and managing broader agency and/or funder discomfort related to research questions, presentation of findings, and recommendations. Alissa Gardenhire-Crooks and her colleagues, take an in-depth look at the perceptions and experiences of 87 African-American, Hispanic, and Native American men who were enrolled in developmental math courses at four community colleges. The study explores how the studentsf experiences in their high schools and communities, as well as their identities as men of color, influenced their decision to go to college and their engagement in school. Susan Gooden and Kasey Martin analyze multiple perspectives on factors related to Latino student success. Data for this study were collected primarily through semi]structured interviews with college administrators, faculty and staff, as well as focus groups with Latino students at two community colleges. The data were collected from June to August 2011. The interviews capture perspectives on the challenges facing Latino students, the programs and services colleges are using to support student success of Latino students, and general lessons and experiences in navigating this demographic shift. In essence, the paper provides an gon the groundh approach to diversity management by analyzing multiple perspectives from students, faculty and administrators. David Patefs paper examines nineteen interviews of African American men and women who were part of a study that examined the effects of a policy change in Milwaukee County to hold incarcerated payersf child support orders in abeyance in 2010. The child support orders were not active during the incarcerated period of his sentencing and up to six months post incarceration. The holding of the order in abeyance was contingent on the participation and agreement of the custodial parent (mother). The paper will specifically provide analysis of the findings utilizing the tenets of critical race theory.

Facilitating College Success Among Emerging Hispanic Serving Institutions
Susan Gooden1, Kasey Martin1 and Margaret Simms2, (1)Virginia Commonwealth University, (2)Urban Institute