Date of Award


Degree Type


University or Center

Clark Atlanta University(CAU)


School of Education

Degree Name



Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Barbara Hill

Second Advisor

Dr. Moses Norman

Third Advisor

Dr. Trevor Turner


The purpose of this mixed methods study was to investigate if the potential benefits of a presence of an effective eighth to ninth grade transition program (BRIDGES Program) within School Cluster A had a positive impact on student attendance, student grades, student discipline referrals, and high school dropout rate, in comparison to School Cluster B, that lacks a transition program, using the same variables. The researcher conducted an unstructured, modified open-ended interview of 20-35 select eighth and ninth grade teachers, administrators and counselors from each cluster. The modified interview process consisted of participants being interviewed verbally as well as a written portion to complete the demographic information in an effort to gain the best responses. The interview was audio taped and transcribed. In this research study, the qualitative methods targeted the number of students in after school tutoring program and BRIDGES Mentoring Program. Attendance in the two programs, overall school attendance, discipline referrals and grade point averages were also investigated. The researcher also examined data of 35-48 students from School Cluster A. The results from this research suggest that the BRIDGES after school tutoring program had a positive relationship in the areas of student attendance, discipline referrals and dropout rate. The BRIDGES after school tutoring program did not have a relationship on student grades. The results from this research also suggest that the BRIDGES Mentoring program had a positive relationship in the area of discipline referrals yet had a negative relationship in the areas of student attendance, grade point average (GPA) and discipline referrals. Results also showed that there was a significant difference in attendance, grades, discipline referrals and dropout rate between a school with a transition program and a school without. Implications and recommendations for educational leaders concerning transition programs are offered.

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