Date of Award

Spring 5-20-2019

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Barbara Hill, Ed.D.

Second Advisor

Daniel Teodorescu, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Jacquita Henderson, Ed.D.

Abstract

This mixed-method study examined factors that influence the retention of P-12 teachers in a southern metropolitan city. Although people are transitioning into P-12 education from nontradition pathways; teacher retention remains a critical concern. The retention of highly qualified teachers, academic achievement, employee morale and the expense of teacher recruitment are a few reasons to identify factors that support the retention of P-12 teachers. The following variables were examined in the research as possible retention factors associated with teacher retention: administrative support, classroom management, financial compensation, mentorship opportunities, principal’s leadership style, professional development opportunities and school culture. Five schools were selected to participate in this study’s data collection process. These schools were selected because they achieved at least an 80% teacher retention rate for the last three school years (2016 - 2017, 2017 – 2018, and 2018 - 2019. Survey data were received from 62 teachers. Fifty-six teachers completed the survey and six teachers declined completion of the survey. A Focus group was conducted with five fine arts teachers.

The survey participants revealed three independent variables (administrative support, principal’s leadership style and school culture) most influential to teacher retention. The majority of the focus group participants reiterated that classroom management was the most influential independent variable. However, the participants spoke in great detail and duration about the significance of administrative support/principal’s leadership style. Perhaps, a different finding would have been obtained if the researcher had gather information from former employees who had departed the school district as opposed to current employees.

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