Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Chue T. Vang


At a high school in a Southern U.S. state, district officials implemented an after-school program in 2018 to assist students with English language skills. However, the effectiveness of the program had not been evaluated. The study purpose was conducting of an evaluation of this program with the conceptual framework of utilization-focused evaluation theory, which involves rigorous data collection with participation by the intended users and for their practical use. The research questions addressed whether the after-school program helped English II students’ learning; whether administrators, parents, and students believed the program contributed to student success; and what strategies could be used to improve students’ performance. A qualitative approach was used for data collection and analysis. A total of 21 stakeholders participated in interviews: 5 administrators, 8 parents, and 8 students. The data were coded for repeated topics and these condensed into themes. The results illustrate stakeholders’ perspectives on the strengths and weaknesses of the program. The five themes were (a) that the program enhanced students’ reading, writing, vocabulary, and grammar skills; (b) that the condensed environment made it easier for teachers to target specific learning areas; (c) that students’ confidence increased as the program progressed; (d) support for the inclusion of more technology and activities; and (e) support for student input in assignments and activities. A program evaluation report with recommendations for school officials’ improvement of the after-school program was created for stakeholder presentation. Implementation of the recommendations may result in students’ increased literacy skills, self-confidence, and motivation.