Date of Award

5-1-2005

Degree Type

Dissertation

University or Center

Clark Atlanta University(CAU)

Degree Name

Ed.D.

Department

Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Moses Norman

Second Advisor

Dr. Ganga Persaud

Third Advisor

Dr. Melanie Carter

Abstract

The purpose of this investigation was to determine if there was a measurable relationship between teachers’ perceptions of the impact of the critical principles of character education and student performance. This dissertation was concerned with the major components that make a successful character education program and also understanding how the principles impact student performance. This study examined the correlation between the presence of the character education principles and student performance. Data collection determined the existence of a positive linear relationship that demonstrated that increases in applications of character education traits, meeting performance (grade-level) standards, reductions in the number of office referrals, and use of conflict resolution to prevent and solve problems were significantly correlated with increases in student performance. This research study analyzed a teachers’ survey that included a 69-item questionnaire including themes Character Education Program Quality, Principal Supervision, Curriculum Implementation Flexibility, Staff Development Support, Cost Effectiveness, Parental Support, and Core Character Education Traits. The dimensions of student performance included (a) application of character education traits, (b) meeting performance (grade-level) standards, (c) reduction in the number of office referrals, and (d) conflict resolution to prevent and solve problems. The findings of this research study were overall, there was a significant mean difference in the dependent variable school and core character education traits. There were no significant mean differences among school and grade level standards, reduction in office referrals, and conflict resolution. There were no school interactions on grade level standards, reduction in office referrals, and conflict resolution and thus, no significant differences existed among schools on the three student performance variables of grade level standards, reduction in office referrals, and conflict resolution. Teachers agreed that the critical character education principles had a positive effect on the dimensions of student performance. The conclusion drawn from the findings in this study was that there was a relationship between teachers’ perceptions of the impact of critical principles of character education and student performance. It is recommended that administrators, teachers, counselors, and parents work collaboratively to establish and implement school-based character education programs in schools to improve students’ behavior, test scores, character traits, and conflict resolution skills. Future research is needed to evaluate the impact of current character education programs on student performance.

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