Date of Award

January 2014

Degree Type

Open Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

First Advisor

Charles S. Hausman

Department Affiliation

Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

Second Advisor

James R. Bliss

Department Affiliation

Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

Third Advisor

Robert Biggin

Department Affiliation

Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

Abstract

The study examined the college and career readiness (CCR) results of a persistently low achieving (PLA) high school located in rural Kentucky. The study included a quantitative analysis examining the statistical role of career and technical education (CTE) in the Kentucky accountability system for high schools. The study assessed student results on academic and technical assessments required by the state's accountability model for CCR as reported for the 2012 and 2013 school years. Frequencies and independent sample t-tests were utilized.

The absence of significant statistical differences between preparatory students, those completing two credits and enrolled in the third credit in a CTE pathway, and non-preparatory students can be viewed as a positive outcome, an educational victory. Preparatory students can be equal contributors to the high school's CCR accountability. A fraction of a point can keep a school from being labeled PLA (now referred to as priority schools). Therefore, it is critical for administrators to ensure every student receives an opportunity to become college and/or career ready.

The study also brings to light the increased emphasis and importance of career and technical education and the role it plays in helping high schools reach their college and career readiness goals. Kentucky's new model assigns the same point value to career readiness as it does college readiness making the stakes greater than ever before for CTE as it is solely responsible for the career readiness portion of CCR in the state.  

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