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Engaging Over-age Participants In Urban Learning And Work Environments: An Empirical Demonstration Of Macro-level Efficiency Through Effective At-risk Student And Teacher Recovery

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Engaging Over-age Participants In Urban Learning And Work Environments: An Empirical Demonstration Of Macro-level Efficiency Through Effective At-risk Student And Teacher Recovery

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dc.contributor.author Farmer, J. Randall en_US
dc.date.accessioned 2011-10-11T20:48:35Z
dc.date.available 2011-10-11T20:48:35Z
dc.date.issued 2011-10-11
dc.date.submitted January 2011 en_US
dc.identifier.other DISS-11323 en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10106/6165
dc.description.abstract This study reviews data-driven appraisals of No Child Left Behind (2001) as well as the nation's at-risk student- and teacher dropout problems. Little, if any, evidence is found that troubled, over-age teens or struggling, first-year educators are overly concerned with the enhancement of federal and state accountability measures, rigorous performance standards, college preparatory curricula, or formative or summative assessments - let alone the academic credentials, continuing education credits, or even combined years of work experience of their teachers and colleagues. Rather, at-risk students and teachers in the nation's urban learning and work environments are most concerned with their want and need to be led (rather than 'managed') as human beings. In fact, it appears that the 3Rs of 'rigor, relevance, and relationships' are exactly backward - that the superficial, structural reforms grandfathered into the current reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 from No Child Left Behind will continue to produce extremely modest enhancements of student learning outcomes without personalized 'relationships' to make rigorous classroom instruction 'relevant' to over-age or novice-level participants. Without a new, service-oriented paradigm in urban public education and public administration that defines the limit to technical-rational administrative behavior by centering on individuals rather than organizations as the unit of analysis, teacher attrition and student dropout rates will continue to rise, costing school districts and the nation billions of dollars over the long run and weakening the country's collective competitiveness in today's global economy. Inspired by the New Public Service leadership paradigm that values 'people, not just productivity' and affirms humanity as the preeminent value of public administration, this study borrows from the fields of education, public administration, philosophy, psychology, and even the natural sciences to create and then test an original theory of responsive, service-oriented instructional leadership. This New Public Service Theory of Urban Public Education opens the 'black box' of what occurred in one dropout prevention program of the Dallas ISD when the theory's scope conditions were met and its instrumental variable, character-driven, caring 'I-You' interaction, was implemented. Instructional leadership teams were created and faculty members were given one paid, 90-minute class period per week during the spring semester of 2008 in which to walk classrooms and build relationships of trust with students as well as share findings with colleagues. The objective was simple: become acquainted over-age students and promote self-directed behaviors that would enhance lifelong learning and success. Within a five-month time period, it is likely (p > .70) that African American (p = .72) and Hispanic male (p = .74) distributions of student GPAs positively diverged as an intact group, and will continue to do so over time, from previous academic performance due to implementation of the instrumental variable. Hispanic females also demonstrated progress, but appeared to need a bit more time. Over 90 percent of at-risk students re-enrolled in school and 100 percent of atrisk teachers secured their teaching credential; and due to the resultant increase in Average Daily Attendance, these school-wide results came within a single semester at absolutely no cost to the district - actually generating a small surplus over $2,000. en_US
dc.description.sponsorship Cosio-martinez, Maria en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher Public Administration en_US
dc.title Engaging Over-age Participants In Urban Learning And Work Environments: An Empirical Demonstration Of Macro-level Efficiency Through Effective At-risk Student And Teacher Recovery en_US
dc.type Ph.D. en_US
dc.contributor.committeeChair Cosio-martinez, Maria en_US
dc.degree.department Public Administration en_US
dc.degree.discipline Public Administration en_US
dc.degree.grantor University of Texas at Arlington en_US
dc.degree.level doctoral en_US
dc.degree.name Ph.D. en_US

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