Adolescent Perceptions of Family Connectedness and School Belonging: Links with Self-Concept and Depressive Symptoms among Gifted African American and Hispanic Youth

Gifted minority students, particularly those who are African-American or Hispanic, often face significant barriers to their optimal psychosocial functioning and academic achievement. Lack of access to appropriate educational resources, reduced teacher expectations, under-identification and underrepresentation in gifted and talented programs, and outright discrimination all contribute to increased risk and reduced psychosocial and academic functioning among these youth. It is clear from the present results that sources of attachment are important for healthy functioning in gifted African American and Hispanic youth. Given the lack of presence of these students in gifted and talented programs nationwide, and the difficulty in retaining these students once enrolled, researchers and practitioners face increasing need to continue to strengthen the “family-school-community” link in order to enhance resiliency and reduce risk in gifted African American and Hispanic youth.

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