Date of Conferral
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
The adoption of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in Mathematics represents a challenge for public educators due to the broad scope of required instructional change. This case study investigated the implementation of a professional development (PD) series across 11 elementary schools, designed to address the problem of insufficient teacher preparation in CCSS pedagogical shifts. Grounded in Vygotsky's social learning theory and constructivism, the training was intended to enhance teacher skills through collaborative, inquiry-based learning. The research questions included in the study examined math teaching practices before and after the implementation of the district training. Through questionnaires and interviews, perceptions of site administrators (n = 17) and math coaches (n = 5) were analyzed via inductive coding and identification of emergent themes to determine the impact of the PD in transforming teacher actions. Findings indicated the PD was effective in preparing teachers to execute math lessons emphasizing conceptual understanding and problem-solving. The resulting project, a program evaluation, was an analysis of the PD where strengths, weaknesses, and recommended improvements were identified. This project study is significant because educational leaders may benefit from the identification of successes and shortcomings of one district's CCSS launch, and may choose to replicate the effective programmatic elements. The study has the potential to impart positive social change as it offers solutions to minimize the achievement gap in the area of mathematics, enabling all students to be better prepared to meet the challenges of the 21st century.