Date: Fri, 24 May 2013 02:35:45 +0200
POLICY AND GOAL FORMATION AND IMPLEMENTATION IN RELATIONSHIP TO STUDENT PERFORMANCE AND DROPOUT RATE (VIRGINIA)
- The purpose of the study is an analysis of improved student achievement and decreased dropout rates in Roanoke, Virginia, viewed through goal and policy adoption and implementation. The research method employed was the case study method involving analyses of ex post facto conditions. Governance of the school district was reviewed, utilizing Zeigler's tools to discern how receptive the School Board was to the wishes of it constituents and the conflict and cooperation between the School Board and Superintendent. Reports on student performance and dropouts as mandated by the State Department of Education were analyzed in terms of student ability, grade level equivalents, and dropouts and suspensions compared to local unemployment rates. A typology of perspectives was used to identify reform, to report legislated change, and to describe implemented educational programs. Data regarding School Board adopted policies and goals were collected from the official School Board policy manual, School Board minutes and publications, and the National School Boards Association's policy and research reports. A comparison of the instructional policy areas researched by the National School Boards Association (NSBA) relevant to effective schools and those instructional policies and goals adopted by the Roanoke City School Board reveals a correlation of 88% between the NSBA policies listed and policies adopted by the School Board. Policies and goals dealing with student performance and dropouts on a district-wide basis, adopted publicly by the School Board, yield improved results. Goals regarding educational program improvements require feedback to the School Board from the staff as to outcome. The results of the study indicated improved student performance and a decrease in the student dropout rate in all schools in the district as a result of School Board policy and goal formation and implementation. Critical reform, legislated change, planning, implementation, and outcome must be considered as interrelated elements if performance is to improve and be maintained. While most policies regarding dropouts deal with attendance, those policies most likely to affect the dropout rate deal with guidance, teaching techniques, alternative education, and personnel.