dr. william allan kritsonis & steven norfleet

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Dr. William Allan Kritsonis & Steven Norfleet In 2004, Dr. William Allan Kritsonis was recognized as the Central Washington University Alumni Association Distinguished Alumnus for the College of Education and Professional Studies. Dr. Kritsonis was nominated by alumni, former students, friends, faculty, and staff. Final selection was made by the Alumni Association Board of Directors. Recipients are CWU graduates of 20 years or more and are recognized for achievement in their professional field and have made a positive contribution to society. For the second consecutive year, U.S. News and World Report placed Central Washington University among the top elite public institutions in the west. CWU was 12th on the list in the 2006 On-Line Education of “America’s Best Colleges.”


  • 1. A MIXED METHODS STUDY OF STUDENT EXPERENCES WITH SCHOOL PRACTICES DEEMED IMPORTANT TO AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT A Dissertation Defense by Steven Norfleet April 9, 2010 William Allan Kritsonis, Dissertation Chair Major Subject: Educational Leadership
  • 2. Dissertation Committee Members
    • William Allan Kritsonis, Ph.D.
    • (Dissertation Chair)
    • Camille Gibson, Ph.D. Lisa Hobson, Ph.D.
    • (Member) (Member)
    • Ronald Howard, Ph.D. Wanda Johnson, Ph.D.
    • (Member) (Member)
  • 3. Dissertation Defense Format
    • Background of the Problem
    • Purpose of the Study
    • Statement of the Problem
    • Significance of the Study
    • Conceptual Model
    • Research Questions
    • Literature Review
    • Method
    • Findings
    • Discussion of Null Hypotheses
    • Conclusions
    • Recommendations
  • 4. Background of the Problem
    • Public schools in the United States continue to struggle with the issue of closing the achievement gap between the African American student and their White counterparts.
    • Educators and researchers alike have attempted to implement solutions to the achievement gap issue. Using primarily top-down approaches, solutions have ranged from improving teacher and administrator qualities, to improving the curriculum, to placing more emphasis on student outcome data, to increasing the rigor in the core subject areas.
  • 5. Background of the Problem (cont.)
    • Marzano asserts, Research in the last 35 years demonstrates that effective schools can have a profound impact on student achievement (p. 8)
    • Since the first NAEP report card was issued, African American achievement scores in reading, mathematics, and science among 9, 13, and 17 year olds have averaged some 30 points below their White peers.
  • 6. Background of the Problem (cont.)
    • NAEP Mathematics Trend Scores
  • 7. Trend in White-Black Achievement Gap in Reading 1971-2008 Source: Rampey, B.D., Dion, G.S., & Donahue, P.L. (2009). National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) 1971-2008
  • 8. Trend in Black-White Achievement Gap in Mathematics 1971-2008 Source: Rampey, B.D., Dion, G.S., & Donahue, P.L. (2009). National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) (Various years, 1971-2008
  • 9. Trend in Grade Twelve Science Achievement Gap by Race/Ethnicity 1996-2005 Source: Grigg, W., Lauko, M., and Brockway, D. (2006). The Nations Report Card: Science 2005 (NCES 2006-466). Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. Government Printing Office.
  • 10. Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (Met Standard, Sum of All Grades Tested)
    • Source: Texas Education Agency, 2009
    62% 67% 70% 72% 76% 80% 82% 84% 45% 52% 55% 58% 0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90% 2005 2006 2007 2008 Year All White African American Percent Passing
  • 11. Texas College Readiness Scores Source: Texas Education Agency, 2009
  • 12. Background of the Problem (cont.)
    • Alfred Rovai, Louis Gallien Jr. and Helen Stiff-Williams (2007) present the added complexity in Closing the African American Achievement Gap in Higher Education that closing the achievement gap in elementary and secondary schools has now carried over to higher education.
  • 13. Background of the Problem (cont.)
    • Gail Thompson (2002) remarked that because of the increase in pressure on school administrators to meet higher federal and state accountability standards including all of the other responsibilities placed on school administrators, California school leaders are asking, What can we do to improve the academic performance of African American children (p. xvii)?
  • 14. Background of the Problem (cont.)
    • Hans Luyten, Adrie Visscher, and Bob Witziers (2004) have called for studies on the why and how of the schools perspective in school effectiveness research, and particularly focusing on the classroom and at the campus level. Their research stressed that the ultimate goal of conducting effectiveness research is to identify effective interventions.
  • 15. Background of the Problem (cont.)
    • Bob Lingard, Jim Ladwig and Allan Luke (as cited in Luyten et al., 2004) point out the black box of schooling needs to be opened with more in depth, qualitative analyses of processes that actually occur in schools, which they perceive to have a potential influence on school performance (pp. 256-257).
  • 16. Purpose of the Study
    • The purpose of the mixed methods study was to describe African American students perceptions of effective leadership practices at their high schools.
  • 17. Statement of the Problem
    • The 2001 No Child Left Behind Act is arguably the most sweeping
    • federal education reform effort to force schools to close the
    • achievement gap for minorities since the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the
    • Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965. Although the NCLB
    • legislation has now been in effect for nine years, recent (National
    • Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), ACT, SAT, and in Texas
    • the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) scores, have not
    • indicated a significant decrease in the academic achievement gap between
    • African American students and their White counterparts.
  • 18. Statement of the Problem (cont.)
    • Cooper (2000) states If reform-minded educators are serious about closing the achievement gap before several decades pass in the new millennium, we must continue to identify alterable factors in the schooling process that help to promote academic success among all students and particularly students of color (p. 620).
    • Marzano also states If a school can simply identify those variables on which it is not performing well, it can pinpoint and receive the information it needs to improve student achievement (p. 87).
    • The purpose of the study was to build highly effective leadership practices of school leaders, which are influential in the academic success of students.
  • 19. Significance of the Study
    • Understanding that raising student achievement directly leads to growth in the national economy and the provision of a smarter work force, the 2001 NCLB ACT provided additional federal funds to states to improve achievement. With a specific focus on sub-populations, the ACT mandates higher teaching standards, more accountability, and increased student performance.
    • In the 1960s the U.S. led the world in high school qualifications and Korea was 27th. Now Korea leads the world and the U.S. is 13th and falling. As recently as 1995 the U.S. was second in the world on college-level graduation rates; just a decade later it has slipped to 14 th (Sir Michael Barber, p. 1).
    • Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study or TIMSS indicate that eighth grade United States students are ninth in the world in mathematics and tenth in science out of 47 countries tested in 2007.