Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Anastasia D'angelo


Expatriate high schools in Asia needed to explore administrative practices used in securing teacher buy-in of standards-based grading and reporting (SBGR). School leaders in this region needed help addressing the challenges of change and securing teacher buy-in of SBGR to successfully transform grading practices in their schools to improve learning for all students. The purpose of the study was to explore the reasons described by administrators for SBGR implementation, administrative practices used to facilitate teacher implementation of SBGR, and the mechanisms put in place to support successful implementation. The exploration of administrators’ perceptions and strategies provided insight into the planning needed to successfully implement strategic change. The conceptual framework for this qualitative multicase study design was the expectancy-value theory. Administrative leaders from 3 expatriate high schools of similar size and programming in East Asia provided the data through semistructured interviews. The interviews were transcribed and coded into words, phrases, or topics before being organized into categories of emergent themes or patterns aligned to each research question. The resulting themes were (a) knowing the why, (b) hiring and retaining the right teachers, (c) effective communication with all stakeholders, (d) professional development, (e) a focus on assessment and feedback, (f) the use of teachers as leaders, and (g) leaders as empathetic learners. The presentation of these practices can be used by school leaders to build the climate necessary to implement successful change to build a better school culture and climate to improve student learning.