Title

The Occurrence of Student Absenteeism From the Regular Classroom Setting and Student Achievement On the Seventh Grade Mathematics Mississippi Curriculum Test

Date of Award

2007

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Educational Leadership and School Counseling

First Advisor

Ronald A. Styron, Jr.

Advisor Department

Educational Leadership and School Counseling

Abstract

This quantitative study examined the variables of student absence from the regular classroom setting and student achievement on the Mississippi Curriculum Test for 7th Grade Mathematics. To examine these variables, the records of 274 seventh grade students from a single grade school in the southern United States were examined and analyzed. The first research question sought to discover whether or not there was a significant relationship between student achievement on the MCT and the total number of days of absence from the regular classroom setting. A single sample t-test was utilized to test for any such relationship. None was found. The second research question sought to discover any significant relationship between MCT test scores of students who had been subject to school suspension and those students who had not been suspended. Utilizing a second single sample t-test, a significant relationship was discovered between these variables. Those who were subject to school suspension scored significantly lower than those never subject to school suspension. Ancillary findings in the study revealed that Black male students comprised a disproportionate amount of students who were numbered with in the grouping of suspended students. Also, Special Education students performed considerably lower on the state assessment than regular education students. Recommendations for educators and policy makers include, use of alternative discipline models, individualized behavioral plans, increased use of alternative school settings for students with behavioral issues, and examination of minority disciplinary practices on the part of school officials, and increased analysis and flexibility with attendance requirements. Suggestions for future research include the following: (1) Analyze student achievement on standardized testing assessments in school contexts which utilize alternative models of student discipline. (2) Analyze relationships between students' absence from the regular classroom and student achievement through a variety of assessment formats. Further research is suggested to look at these relationships with differing kinds of student assessments, including course grading and grade point averages.