LITHUANIAN QUARTERLY JOURNAL OF ARTS AND SCIENCES
Volume 22, No.1 - Spring 1976
Editors of this issue: J.A. Račkauskas
Copyright © 1976 LITUANUS Foundation, Inc.
Vytautas Gavelis, "A Descriptive Study of the Educational Attainment, Occupation, and Geographical Location of the Children of Lithuanian Displaced Persons and of American Born Parents who Attended Immaculate Conception Primary School in East St. Louis, from 1948 to 1968," Unpublished Ph.D. Dissertation, Department of Secondary Education, Graduate School, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, Illinois, August, 1975.
The purpose of this study was to investigate how the children of Lithuanian D.P.'s, who being from a different culture and not able to speak English before they started their education in the United States, performed in their later educational and professional lives when compared with the children of American born parents who spoke English at home and whose cultural backgrounds were slightly European. The general geographical preferences of the two groups of children in their adult lives was also a point of comparison.
This study concerned itself with a description of the educational attainments, present occupations, and general geographical locations of two hundred and twenty-four students who attended the Immaculate Conception Primary School, located at 15 Street and Baugh Avenue, in East St.Louis, Illinois, between the years 1948 and 1968.
The subjects for this study were 224 children who attended the Immaculate Conception Primary School from 1948 through 1968. Out of the total number of 224 children, 66 (41 girls and 25 boys) were children of Lithuanian D.P. parents and 158 — (78 girls and 80 boys) were children of American born parents.
The population included in the study was divided into two groups:
1. Sixty-six children (41 girls and 25 boys) were children of Lithuanian D.P. families who spoke Lithuanian at home because neither parents nor children could speak English.
2. One hundred and fifty-eight children (78 girls and 80 boys) were children of American born parents whose cultural background was slightly European and who spoke English at home.
The data gathering was conducted by the writer using the records of students enrolled during the years 1948 -1968 in the Immaculate Conception Primary School. The records of the local parochial and public high schools were searched, and information was provided by the personnel of the schools. The relatives, friends, and acquaintances of the subjects were interviewed by the writer and the data recorded.
Treatment and Data Presentation
From the original enrollment lists of students (1948-1968) all students were identified and divided into two main groups: (1) those who came from homes of Lithuanian D.P.'s and who were unable to speak English when they began school in the U.S., and (2) those whose parents were American born and who spoke English at home.
After the separation of all students into two main groups, the girls and boys of each group were listed separately and then divided into those who attended a parochial high school and those who went to a public high school. For each group, the educational attainments, occupations and general geographical locations were tabulated; percentages calculated and recorded.
Educational Attainment of D.P. Children
The following conclusions can be drawn from the study:
1. More boys and girls from D.P. families that attended parochial high schools graduated (9%) than did those who attended public high schools (78%).
2. Fewer girls from D.P. families that attended parochial high schools went to college than did those who graduated from public high schools; however, at this writing, a larger percentage from the parochial group (83%) have graduated from college. It should be noted that four (or 80%) of those attended college from the public high school group are still students. Also, it should be noted that those D.P. girls who graduated from parochial high schools have a greater number of graduates with advanced degrees.
3. More boys from D.P. families who graduated from parochial high schools attended college (1.1%) that did those who were public high school graduates (1.7%). However, one boy who graduated from a public high school is still a student.
Educational Attainments of Children of American Born Parents
1. More girls of American born parents attended parochial high schools (84.6%) than public high schools (15%), but a smaller percentage of the parochial high schools girls graduated (84.4%) than of those who went to public high schools (91.7%).
2. The percentage of parochial high schools graduating girls who went to college (40.4%) is larger than that of those who attended public high schools (18.2%).
3. All of the boys attending parochial high schools graduated, but only 86.4 per cent of the boys attending public high schools graduated.
4. More parochial high school graduates attended a four year college (56.5%) than those graduating from the public high schools (12.5%).
Comparison of Educational Attainment of all Students from D.P. and American Homes
1. The percentage of girls who attended high school who were children of American born parents (100%) is larger than the percentage of those from D.P. families (97.5%). However, more of the D.P. girls attending high school graduated (90.2%) than did those of American born parents (87.2%).
2. A larger percentage of D.P. girls attended and graduated from a four year college (51.1% attended, 39% graduated) than girls of American born parents (32%) attended, 19.2 per cent graduated).
3. Twelve per cent of the D.P girls graduating from high school attended graduate school while none of the girls of American born parents did.
4. There is no great difference between the boys of D.P families and those of American born parents in the attainment of high school or college education.
The Educational Attainment of All Two Hundred and Twenty-Four Students Who Attended Immaculate Conception School
Boys and Girls of Both Groups
1. Ninety-nine point one per cent attended high school, 92.4 per cent graduated.
2. Forty-eight point two percent attended college; 29 per cent graduated; 4 per cent are still students.
3. Five point four per cent attended graduate school; 4.4 per cent graduated; one per cent are still students.
Comparison of Occupations
1. More girls of American born parents are employed as secretaries and office workers (19.1%) than are girls of D.P. homes (7.3%).
2. More girls of American born parents are housewives (52.6%) than are D.P girls (36.7%).
3. Fewer girls of American born parents are engaged in professional occupations (18 %) than are those of D.P. parents (34%). (This includes professions that require a college education; office secretaries and clerks are not included.)
4. Generally, there is no large difference in the percentage of D.P. boys and the percentage of boys of American -born parents employed in professional work.
5. Fewer D.P. boys hold blue collar jobs (28%) than do boys of American born parents (35%).
6. More of the boys of American born parents are office clerks (10%) than D.P. boys (4%) are.
7. Fewer D. P. boys are engaged in management and supervision (12%) than boys born of American parents (15%).
Comparison of Geographical Locations
1. None of the D. P. children live within the city of East St. Louis, and only four per cent of the boys and girls of American born parents reside within the city limits.
2. More girls (67.2%) and boys (70.5%) of American born parents than D. P. girls (51.2%) and boys (56%) live within a fifty mile radius of East St. Louis.
3. Fewer girls (28.6%) and boys (25.7%) of American born parents than D.P. girls (48.8%) and boys (44%) have moved outside of the fifty mile radius of the city of East St. Louis.
In the opinion of the writer, the following recommendations are suggested for further study:
1. To make a historical study of the Immaculate Conception Primary School from its beginning in 1934 until its closing in 1968.
2. To make a similar study of the students of another school, comparing their attainments with those of the students of the Immaculate Conception Primary School.
3. To make a study to find out why more girls of D. P. families attended college than did those of American born parents.
4. To make an investigation of the scope of influence of the Lithuanian immigrants upon the other peoples in East St. Louis — including their contributions to social, economical, religious, and political life — for the historical record.