Date of Award


Access Restriction


Degree Name

Doctorate in Education



School or College

School of Education

First Advisor

Jill P. Bickett

Second Advisor

Martha McCarthy

Third Advisor

Ernest Rose


Literature shows that one of the major issues affecting the achievement of inner-city African- American male students in public-schools is the ineffectiveness of disciplinary procedures. These studies have shown a direct positive relationship between student behavioral problems and academic failure. This study was an attempt at answering Noguera’s (2008) call for understanding more fully how African-American males come to perceive schooling, in particular their discipline experiences, and how environmental and cultural forces impact this perception of their behavior and performance in school. This was a qualitative study that heard the stories of inner-city African-American male students who were pushed out of public-schools through disciplinary measures. This study was based on racial components that fit directly into the structure of Critical Race Theory (CRT). The qualitative research method of portraiture was used to answer this study’s research question because it was relative to the problems that African- American male students face in their inner-city schooling experiences. The participants in this study were at least eighteen years old, African American, and pushed out of an inner-city public high school based on disciplinary consequences. Each participant shared environmental, cultural, and schooling experiences through a series of three interviews. The study found that environmental and cultural forces had a negative affect on the ways that these African-American males perceived their experiences in public-schools. The study concluded that these young men found success in private-continuation-schools, and that educators and policy makers should consider implementing the practices of these alternative schools in U.S. public-schools.