Research in school success in contemporary China has argued that market reforms have reproduced the advantages for children from the cadre and the professional families while simultaneously creating new opportunities for children of the new arising economic elites. However, it has performed less for traditional peasant families. This book places a special emphasis on how rural parents from different social backgrounds use guanxi (interpersonal social networks) to maintain the interconnectedness between their families and schools to create advantages for their children in school success. It investigates, by an ethnographic study in a rural county in middle China, how families from different social backgrounds within rural society get involved in the schooling of their children and how this contributes to different patterns of school success. The book argues that schools provide few formal and routine channels for rural parents to become involved in their children’s schooling. This raises the importance of family strategic initiatives to employ guanxi in the creation of advantages for their children’s school success. It concludes with discussions about guanxi as an important mechanism for social exclusion in post-socialist China.
This concise and comprehensive book is a qualitative study that will appeal to researchers and advance students in Chinese education and society.
Chapter 1: Introduction 1.1 Rural Children and School Success in the Market Transitional Era 1.2 Parental Involvement and Social Class 1.3 Capital, Guanxi and Inequality 1.4 Research Methodology 1.5 About this book Chapter 2: The Social Connections Between Home and School: The Institutional Hole 2.1 Introduction 2.2 Toward Social-Capital Conversion: Parents‘ Voice About School Involvement 2.2.1 Material and Emotional Supports 2.2.2 Managing 2.2.3 Tutoring 2.2.4 Knowing the Academic Scores 2.2.5 School Choice 2.3 Trinity Become One Force: Missing the Linkages Between Family and School 2.3.1 Trinity Become One Force: The Interdependence of Family and School 2.3.2 Vague Ways: The Separation of Family and School 2.4 Restricted Access to Schooling: Teachers‘ Voices About Parental Involvement 2.4.1 Marginalized Roles: The Perceived Importance of Parent by Teachers in Schooling 2.4.2 Limited Inter-Connectedness: Formal Channels for Parents to get Involved 2.5 Conclusion Chapter 3: Parents‘ Strategies: Guanxi as a Response 3.1 Introduction 3.2 Peasant: Relying on Teachers and the Strong Ties Within Families 3.2.1 Relying on Teachers 3.2.2 Skipped Generational Raising 3.2.3 Kinships and Relatives 3.3 Cadre and Professional: Reproducing Strong Ties With Colleagues 3.3.1 Family and Community 3.3.2 Colleagues and Friends 3.4 The New Economic Elites: Reproducing Interpersonal Ties with Teachers 3.4.1 Peidu (accompany studying) 3.4.2 Giving Gifts and Hosting Banquets for Teachers 3.5 Conclusion Chapter 4: Consequences: Intended and Unintended 4.1 Introduction 4.2 Intended Consequences 4.2.1 School Engagement and Promotion 4.2.2 Access to Key Schools and Classes 4.2.3 Teachers' Care 4.3 Unintended Consequences 4.3.1 Complains and distrust 4.3.2 Social relations reproduced 4.4 Conclusion Chapter 5: Conclusions and Discussions 5.1 Introduction 5.2 Market and the Instituitional Hole Between Family and School 5.3 Social Stratification, Guanxi Exclusion and Capital Conversion 5.4 Inequality in Social Capital and School Success 5.5 Policy Implications and Recommendations Bibliography Index