Date of Award

Spring 2014

Access Restriction

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctorate in Education

Department

Education

School or College

School of Education

First Advisor

Marta P. Baltodano, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Karen K. Huchting, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Mary K. McCullough, Ph.D.

Abstract

Time-based reform proposals are founded on the assumption that more time in school will produce great learning outcomes. Research shows that when schools adopt time-based reform initiatives, there are certain considerations that they should make and methods they should follow to ensure the change produces the outcomes intended. This was not the case in a local Archdiocese where a calendar extension was adopted by several elementary schools.

This qualitative case study focused on the adoption of a calendar extension at one Catholic elementary school. The researcher gathered data from the pastor, principal, teachers, parents, and students to determine how these stakeholders envisioned the outcomes of this change, how they perceived the time was being used for curricular, co-curricular, and extracurricular purposes, and the challenges and opportunities that they felt existed after three years of implementation. Data collected over a four-month period included classroom observations, stakeholder interviews, focus group meetings, and document analysis.

An inductive analysis of the data collected was used to determine emergent themes and domains within the school. The seven themes that emerged include: decision making, planning and implementation, advantages, financial motivations, the culture of teaching, leadership, challenges and complications of the extended calendar.

Recommendations include the need for school leaders to familiarize themselves with change management techniques including setting a shared vision, establishing a collaborative implementation plan, and developing a system of assessment prior to embarking on school reform.

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