Testimonios of Undocumented Latinx Students with Disabilities: Finding a Way Forward

dc.creatorCarlos Lavin
dc.description.abstractTESTIMONIOS OF UNDOCUMENTED LATINX STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES: FINDING A WAY FORWARD Carlos Enrique Lavín, Ph.D. George Mason University, 2020 Dissertation Director: Dr. Grace L. Francis This dissertation focuses on how collective narratives help identify systemic barriers and supports from Kindergarten to 12th grade by examining the experiences of undocumented Latinx students with disabilities. Because of the intersectionality of immigration status, ethnicity/race, and disability, there is not enough research that can help understand this population’s strengths and needs. In order to further understand how undocumented Latinx with disabilities navigate their K-12 experience, I used testimonio as the research methodology to engage two students who identified as Latinx, self-disclosed having a learning disability, and had Temporary Protective Status. In addition, I also recruited the students’ immediate family to complement the students’ testimonio with their own narrative. Through collaborative analysis and the use of a critical race grounded methodology, I analyzed the testimonios of the study participants and identified the supports and barriers undocumented Latinx students with disabilities face in K-12 settings. When the participants felt they were seen as fully human by school administrators, staff, teachers, and peers, they identified systems of support. When the participants felt the Dominant narrative influenced how people saw them and were only measured by their disability, race/ethnicity, or immigration status, they identified systemic barriers. My analysis concludes that the testimonios of my participants indeed reveal effective counter-stances to the Dominant narrative. It also proposes a way forward. Through the testimonios of my participants, a different narrative emerged, offering an alternative to the Dominant narrative’s dualistic stance. The dissertation ends with a call to action, challenging educators to identify the ways in which they can disrupt the Dominant narrative in their classroom.
dc.titleTestimonios of Undocumented Latinx Students with Disabilities: Finding a Way Forward
thesis.degree.disciplineSpecial Education
thesis.degree.grantorGeorge Mason University


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