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ERIC Number: ED557144
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 101
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3212-7344-1
An Examination of the Impact That Selected School Characteristics Have on the Academic Achievement of Students Attending High Schools in South Carolina
McCord, Gregory A.
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, South Carolina State University
The impact of school locale, size and poverty levels (SES) on student achievement has been of great interest in school research for more than the last five decades. The increasing public demand to hold schools accountable for their effects on student outcomes lends urgency to the task of exploring variables related to student achievement that are within the control of school districts like school locale, size and even poverty indexes. Even though the study of school affects has been a major sociological issue, empirical analyses tend to minimize or ignore structural variables such as location, size or socio-economic status (SES) (Morgan & Alwin, 1980). School and student characteristics indicated important predictors of student achievement help answer if there is a threshold for location, size, or SES for high schools in South Carolina considering the mediating factors of school locale (metropolitan/rural), school size (small 500), using 10th grade enrollment size (small 100), and the mediating factor of student poverty on student achievement and school absolute ratings. This study examined the variables of school location, size, and poverty index using tenth-grade high school students and the impact on academic achievement as measured by the High School Assessment Program (HSAP). This test was developed in spring 2003 and it replaced the Basic Skills Achievement Test (BSAP). In 2001 the Federal Government passed the No Child Left Behind law which mandates 100% of all students will test proficient in English and Math by the year 2014. The HSAP test was designed to determine how well South Carolina educates students. The HSAP provided data for the state's accountability tool used to determine absolute and growth ratings (Education Policy Center, 2011). This study's target population included two hundred and nine high schools in South Carolina during school year 2012-2013. Over fifty-four thousand student test scores were reviewed. A correlational research study was used to determine how select characteristics impacted achievement in English and Math. Correlation research showed the statistical relationship between the variables examined. There were three possible results of this correlational research study: positive correlation, negative correlation and no correlation. The correlational coefficient is a measure of correlational strength and can range from -1.00 to +1.00. The findings revealed that the relationships resulting from the interaction among independent variables of locale, (urban/rural) school size (small/large), and poverty indexes (subsidized meals), and their impact on student achievement in both English and Math varied greatly as there was a significant relationship in each area examined. Positive relationships existed regardless of the location of schools (urban/rural) or the size of the school. The same was determined for school growth as there was a positive relationship in schools reaching higher heights each year regardless of the location or size of the school. However, negative relationships included poverty indexes as a major factor. This body of work will assist local boards of education and future policy makers in South Carolina, given current population projections of continued growth state-wide, to examine the role of school location, size and SES as factors to be considered when making decisions regarding construction or consolidation or deconsolidation of high schools, as an important factor in designing schools for optimum student success. [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: High Schools; Secondary Education; Grade 10
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: South Carolina
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001