Immigrant Parental Expectations and Investment into Education of Children: Models Formed by Immigrant Families in the Czech Republic
By Daniela Pěničková, Dana Bittnerová, Mirjam Moravcová
In his article written for the Migration to the Centre project Thomas Huddleston from the Migration Policy Groups underscores the importance of closing the gap between rates of third country migrants and EU citizens in terms of their participation in higher education. This article reflects this call by presenting an analysis of the factors that play into the complex decision making process by immigrant parents (Russian, Ukraine, Slovak, and Vietnamese) about their children education and reasons, or lack of, for supporting children’s higher education in the Czech Republic.
Since the 1990s, the Czech Republic has become a destination country for a variety of ethnic groups coming from regions that are both related to and different from cultural traditions of the Czech society. The presence of these new immigrants poses a range of problems in reference to the future of the immigrants’ children and their integration as well as social mobility within the larger Czech society. It is education that is the common denominator of these two processes. School forms children’s attitudes vis-ŕ-vis the state establishment of the Czech mainstream society. Parents then provide the socio-cultural foundations for their children’s upbringing and shape the direction of their professional training. This direction is molded by conceptualization of the parental own position in the new host society and the position of their entire immigrant group in the Czech Republic.
In the context of the newly developed situation, this research explores how immigrant parents of different ethnic backgrounds and socio-cultural status approach the education of their children. It explores immigrant parents’ strategies through which they provide their children with foundations for their social, cultural, and economic success. In other words, we examine parental investment into their children’s extracurricular education and professional career formation and the expectations that parents have about their investment’s effects. The analysis of these strategies and expectations is carried out within the belief system of each ethnic group in question. The research targets the four currently largest groups of immigrants in the Czech Republic: Slovak, Russian, Ukraine, and Vietnamese immigrants  (See Table 1).
Due to the extensive length of the article the whole text /in the pdf format/ you can find bellow.
The article has been written as part of the
project Migration to the Centre supported by the by the Europe for Citizens
Programme of the European Union and the International Visegrad Fund.
This article reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.
 This text is a selection of larger research project titled: Parental Strategies in Education of Children in the Czech Republic: Models Formed in Families of Different Ethnic Backgrounds funded by the Global
 Czech schools, by law, register only their students/pupils’ citizenship, not their nationality. In the year 2008/2009 the percentage of foreign students attending Czech schools (elementary schools, high schools, and conservatories – high schools specializing in art & music) was 1.4%. The four countries with the highest number of students constituting this percentage were Russian, Slovak, Ukrainian, and Vietnamese students/pupils.