Date of Conferral
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
In a Midwest school district, school personnel and students are concerned that the Extra School Time (EST) program student enrollment is declining. The purpose of this qualitative case study was to explore teacher, administrator, and adult age student perceptions to gain a deeper understanding of the problem leading to declining enrollment in the EST program. Using Lewin's holistic model of systemic leadership and evaluation of programs, teachers', students' and administrators' perceptions of factors, processes for support, curriculum needs, and actions to improve implementation of the EST program were explored. Using a qualitative case study, data were collected via semi-structured interviews and a survey of 9 purposefully sampled participants. Sampling criteria included being a current or former adult age student who attended the EST program, current EST teacher, and EST administrators. Data from semi-structured interviews and surveys were triangulated and analyzed using inductive and comparative coding, and a constant comparative analysis method. Emerging themes were coded using axial coding. Six themes emerged: lack of child care, transportation, work conflict with class attendance, convenience of times classes were offered, and offering courses that were relevant to the student. A 24-hour faculty professional development program was developed to educate EST faculty and staff on the issues influencing declining EST enrollment and develop strategies and actions to improve implementation of the EST program by addressing student and teacher needs. Positive social change from this study may include increased graduation rates, meaningful employment for EST participants, college entrance, and employment growth for the local community.