Date of Award


Degree Type


University or Center

Clark Atlanta University(CAU)


School of Education

Degree Name



Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Sheila Gregory

Second Advisor

Dr. Moses C. Norman

Third Advisor

Dr. Trevor Turner


Determining teacher job satisfaction has become a critical focus for public school administrators due to the codification of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. Recruitment and retention of quality teachers is both beneficial for continual student achievement and cost effective for school districts. The job satisfaction of those teachers often determines the retention rates. The purpose of this study is to determine key factors that impact job satisfaction of teachers in three urban public elementary schools who have remained in their positions five or more years. This qualitative study was conducted by administering an initial survey to determine qualifications for participation, individual interviews and a focus group. The target population of teachers was from three urban public elementary schools. All data collected were synthesized to identify patterns and/or reoccurring themes in the participant’s responses during the interviews and focus group. All transcripts were cross-referenced with field notes taken during interviews and the focus group. Results were placed in a matrix in order to organize the data based on various coding categories. Based on the data analysis of the emergent themes. the researcher identified three dominate themes: positive student-teacher interactions, participative leadership, and teacher training. The first dominate emergent theme of positive student-teacher interaction was a direct correlation to three out of eight variables chosen for this research design. Those three variables are (a) school size, (b) student achievement, and (c) student discipline. The second dominant emergent theme of participative leadership has a direct correlation to three other variables of the eight chosen for this research design. Those three variables are (a) class assignment, (b) collegial support, and (c) principal behavior. The third dominate emergent theme of teacher training has a direct correlation to the remaining two variables of the eight chosen for this research design. Those two variables are certification method and preparatory programs.

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