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17-02-2018 | Original Paper | Uitgave 6/2018

Journal of Child and Family Studies 6/2018

Are mothers’ work-to-family conflict, school involvement, and work status related to academic achievement?

Tijdschrift:
Journal of Child and Family Studies > Uitgave 6/2018
Auteurs:
Erin K. Holmes, Hayley M. Holladay, E. Jeffrey Hill, Jeremy B. Yorgason

Abstract

This study investigates a moderated mediational model whereby maternal involvement in schooling mediates the association between maternal work-to-family conflict and children’s academic achievement in early adolescence, and socioeconomic contexts interact with maternal work status to moderate this association. Participants reflect a subsample of 725 fifth graders (and their employed mothers and teachers) from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development (NICHD SECCYD). Of the children in this subsample, 49.4% were female and 79.7% were White, non-hispanic. On average mothers completed 14.7 years of education (SD = 2.4), with 75.4% of mothers completing more than a high school education. Multi-group analyses in SEM using Mplus 7.4 tested whether maternal work status would interact with core socioeconomic contexts (e.g., maternal education, child race, marital status, poverty status, work schedule, and number of children in the home) to moderate the relationship between maternal work-to-family conflict, maternal involvement in school, and academic outcomes. Results revealed partial mediation between maternal work-to-family conflict and achievement through maternal involvement in school. Our hypothesis that maternal work status would interact with other core socioeconomic contexts to moderate the relationship between maternal work-to-family conflict, maternal involvement in school, and academic outcomes was supported. We conclude that mothers’ involvement in school may be an important way in which negative outcomes of work-to-family conflict may be minimized. We also highlight the importance of situating maternal employment in a larger familial and socioeconomic context.

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