Date of Conferral





Human Services


Barbara Benoliel


The construct of educational accountability formally originated in 2001 as a means to improve education standards by holding teachers accountable for student academic progress; however, the definition of educational accountability for parents continues to be illusive. The purpose of this generic, qualitative study was to explore the perceptions of educational accountability among single, African American mothers of high school-aged children. The research question asked about how the beliefs of educational accountability among single African American mothers related to any involvement in their children's education. Azjen's theory of planned behavior, which outlines the relation of intention to action, was the framework used to analyze the attitudes and perceived behavior control of the participants regarding parental involvement. Data collected from one-on-one interviews with 5 single African American mothers were transcribed and analyzed using manual open coding and thematic analysis. The results of the study indicated that the mothers' intentions to be more involved in their children's education played a significant role in the outcome of their children's academic success, whether or not they were actively present in the school. Parental involvement may be explained by the overall socialization of children toward these intentions. It is recommended that educational institutions explore alternate options of parental involvement tailored to meet the needs of parents to be involved. This study contributes to social change by informing educators and African American families to collaborate to instill positive involvement in children's' educational planning.