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Online Submission, Research Project Submitted to the Graduate Faculty of the School of Education in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts, Saint Xavier University (Chicago, Illinois, May 2007)

The purpose of this research project was to improve the attendance of high school students using teacher initiatives. There were two teachers and about 140 students involved. The interventions used were improving lesson plans, developing better relationships with students and positive incentives. The students at this school had a history of very poor attendance. There were around 40 truant students each day, or about 20% of the students in the program. Attendance was the number one reason for student failure and for students dropping out without receiving a diploma. Teachers at the school rated it the number one factor negatively affecting their classrooms. The research suggested that students will show up more consistently for lesson plans that interest them, teachers that care about them, and for extrinsic rewards. This research was a combination of secondary sources that had addressed the issue and primary research done at the school. Through a combination of attendance records and interviews with students and staff, it became apparent that teachers could influence the attendance of their students if they used the proper strategy. Students commented that they often missed school because they were disinterested, so an effort was made to make school more relevant, engaging and challenging. Students explained that they show up more for a teacher that they like or respect, so an effort was made to improve the relationship between students and staff. Finally, students react to positive reinforcement, so rewards were offered for students with good attendance. This project resulted in better attendance in several individual classrooms, though not in the school overall. Students began to display more responsibility and discipline concerning their attendance in many of the classes this project affected, some improving by five fewer absences per student. This project was a positive step in the direction of improving student attendance. Appended are: (1) Attendance Records; (2) Teacher Survey; (3) Student Survey; (4) Lesson Plan Example A; (5) Lesson Plan Example B; (6) Jean Day Incentive Advertisement; and (7) Checklist for Individual Teachers to Improve their Attendance in their Classrooms. (Contains 32 figures.) [M. A. Thesis, Saint Xavier University, Chicago, Illinois.]

Descriptors: High School Students, Truancy, Attendance, Secondary School Teachers, Teacher Student Relationship, Rewards, Positive Reinforcement, Educational Improvement, Lesson Plans, Teacher Surveys, Student Surveys, Teacher Researchers, Intervention

Autor: Nemec, Christopher J.; Watson, Rod A.

Fuente: https://eric.ed.gov/?q=a&ft=on&ff1=dtySince_1992&pg=3844&id=ED496096

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