Title

The Relationship Between Accreditation Levels of School Districts in Mississippi and Selected Educational Variables

Date of Award

1998

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Educational Studies and Research

First Advisor

Arthur Southerland

Advisor Department

Educational Studies and Research

Abstract

The major purpose of this study was to determine the relationship between school accreditation level and the amount of Title I funds, the amount of Title II funds, and the current expenditure per pupil. The difference in this relationship according to the utilization of Title I funds, the level of teachers' degrees, the number of emergency certificates, the experience level of teachers, district type, district size, and the economic wealth of the district was also investigated. The participants of this study were the 149 public school districts within the state of Mississippi during the school year 1995-1996. The data for this study was collected from (a) The 1997 Annual Report of the State Superintendent of Public Education to the Legislature of Mississippi 1997 Statistical Reports 1995-96, (b) The Mississippi Report Card 1995-96, (c) a federal dollars allocation list issued by the Mississippi State Department of Education, and (d) a survey developed to collect data on the utilization of Title I funds. The following conclusions resulted: (1) A relationship existed between the criterion variable of accreditation level and the independent variables of the amount of Title I funds, the amount of Title II funds, and current expenditure per pupil. (2) Each of the variables of the amount of Title I funds and the amount of Title II funds were independent predictors of accreditation level. This finding indicates a lack of strong correlation between these two variables. Therefore, these variables had unique power in predicting the criterion variable of accreditation levels. (3) Current expenditure per pupil was not independently related to accreditation level. (4) The relationship between the criterion variable of accreditation level and the variables of the amount of Title I funds, the amount of Title II funds, and current expenditure per pupil was stronger for the utilization of Title I funds in the categories of support personnel and equipment purchase than the remaining utilization categories. (5) The relationship between the criterion variable of accreditation level and the variables of the amount of Title I funds, the amount of Title II funds, and current expenditure per pupil was stronger for county districts than for consolidated and separate district. (6) The relationship between the criterion variable of accreditation level and the variables of the amount of Title I funds, the amount of Title II funds, and current expenditure per pupil was stronger for districts with enrollments between 1,469 and 1,629 pupils and districts with enrollments between 1,630 and 2,063 pupils than in other enrollment sizes. (7) The relationship between the criterion variable of accredition level and the variables of the amount of Title I funds, the amount of Title II funds, and current expenditure per pupil was stronger for low economic wealth districts than for high economic wealth districts. (8) There was no interaction between the utilization of Title I funds, district type, level of teachers' experience, and economic wealth of the district on the criterion variable of accreditation level. (9) Separate type school districts, regardless of accreditation level, had a higher percent of teachers with higher degrees. (10) Districts with accreditation levels of 4 and 5 used Title I funds for the reduction of class size for grade levels K-4 while the other levels used Title I funds for the reduction of class size for grade levels 5-8.