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ERIC Number: ED545720
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 287
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2674-8314-0
Declining Student Enrollment: A Case Study Exploring How Three Suburban School Districts Crafted Coherence
Dimmitt, Eric J.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Cardinal Stritch University
This qualitative multi-site case study's purpose was to prove that the crafting coherence process was evident when three suburban Midwestern school districts implemented schools' goals while experiencing reductions in instructional programming, staffing, and facilities resources along with school closings due to significant declining student enrollment. Significant declining student enrollment was defined as a 10% or more reduction in district student enrollment for a ten year period. Crafting coherence was defined as a process of central office administrators and building principals collaboratively negotiating "...demands strategically to inform and enable implementation" of school goals (Honig & Hatch, 2004, p. 19). Using the descriptive model created by Honig and Hatch, the researcher developed a theoretical model suggesting crafting coherence was present in the three school districts studied. Through interviews with central office administrators and building principals, a focus group of building principals, and analysis of school goal and district profile documents, the researcher examined how the three school districts in the study implemented school goals. A unique system of goal setting for each school district and an inclusive, collaborative, and trusting process among the central office administrators and building principals was found. When central office administrators and building principals were creating schools goals, the superintendent was the most significant individual in the process, and principals served as mediators and interpreters of school goals. All three districts in the study reported the process of implementing goals had improved, but the community's unchanged expectations and the teachers' perspective during the period of declining enrollment had an impact on the central office administrators and building principals crafting of coherence. Further questions remain about the role of central office and building principal leadership in school goal setting, the types of goal setting that exist, and how the understanding of crafting coherence can serve others experiencing demands like significant declining student enrollment. [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
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A