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ERIC Number: ED528808
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 177
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1246-3163-9
An Exploration of the Relationships among Funding, Poverty, and College Matriculation for School Districts in North Carolina
Jackson, Tammi Dionne
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, University of Pennsylvania
The disparity in funding between low-income and affluent school districts has stirred much discussion among educators and policymakers. Low-funded schools, which generally educate the greatest number of minority and low-income students, also tend to have lower test results on standardized exams, lower graduation rates, higher dropout rates, and thus, lower educational achievement than their more affluent counterparts. There is a new urgency around the issues of achievement and funding gaps in K-12 education due to the recognition that higher education is more important to opportunity than ever before. Increasingly jobs require a high level of skill and knowledge, and more specifically, a college degree. This research study sought to answer the following research questions: 1. What are the relationships among funding, poverty and college matriculation among school districts in North Carolina? and 2. What are the forces that contribute to high performance for a school in a high-performance, low-funded, high poverty school district in North Carolina? This study used a mixed method approach. To explore the relationships among funding, poverty and indicators of preparation and enrollment in college at North Carolina's 115 public school districts, the quantitative method employed Pearson correlations and multiple regression analyses. The results of the quantitative analyses were used to inform the second, qualitative component of this study. Using case study methodology, this component explored how a public high school in a low-funded, high-poverty, high-performance district was able to achieve such success. The quantitative analyses show that funding matters for several indicators that are important to college matriculation. Descriptive analyses also show that five school districts achieve success even with low funding and high poverty. The qualitative analyses pointed to six forces that promote college enrollment even with high-poverty and low-funding. Those forces are: strong leadership; use of available resources; rigorous academic curriculum; support of teachers; counseling and access to college information; and use of data and accountability standards. Together, these forces foster a college-going culture which promotes college matriculation. The findings and conclusions from this dissertation will benefit state legislators and educators in their efforts to close achievement gaps and promote college matriculation. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: North Carolina