Unique and Protective Contributions of Parenting and Classroom Processes to the Adjustment of African American Children Living in Single-Parent Families


  • Gene H. Brody,

  • Shannon Dorsey,

  • Rex Forehand,

  • Lisa Armistead


The unique contributions that parenting processes (high levels of monitoring with a supportive, involved mother-child relationship) and classroom processes (high levels of organization, rule clarity, and student involvement) make to children’s self-regulation and adjustment were examined with a sample of 277 single-parent African American families. A multi-informant design involving mothers, teachers, and 7- to 15-year-old children was used. Structural equation modeling indicated that parenting and classroom processes contributed uniquely to children’s adjustment through the children’s development of self-regulation. Additional analyses suggested that classroom processes can serve a protective-stabilizing function when parenting processes are compromised, and vice versa. Further research is needed to examine processes in both family and school contexts that promote child competence and resilience.