LONG-TERM SUSPENSIONS: EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES TO KEEP STUDENTS ENGAGED IN SCHOOLING
Smith, Andre Charles
The purpose of the current study was to determine educational leaders' perceptions of effective strategies for keeping long-term suspended students engaged in learning. As school districts struggle with best practices to reduce dropouts and increase graduation rates, they look to ensure that suspended students remain focused on education. A Q-Sort methodology was employed that allowed 40 participants, each a principal of a school district, to sort cards that contained a list of effective strategies. The study involved an investigation of the best practices to keep students engaged while serving a long-term suspension, practices that were developed from the literature as well as from practicing school educators. A set of working strategies was generated for further examination. Educators "sorted" these strategies for quantitative analysis, and a selection was interviewed for qualitative analysis. Finally, data was collected and analyzed from educators regarding their perceptions and experiences of the effective strategies. Findings revealed four emergent factors from the participants' understanding of the most effective strategies for keeping long-term suspended students engaged. Participants valued the importance of a strategy that places students in a separate physical site while serving their suspension, as well as programs that individually support each student to meet their unique needs (Factor One). Additionally, the principals in the study believed that placing an emphasis on building positive adult and peer relationships is an effective strategy to keep long-term suspended students engaged in school, including utilizing outside agencies, social workers, and counselors as needed (Factor Two). Strategies that allow the long-term suspended student to keep pace with their coursework were also believed by the participants to be effective (Factor Three) in allowing for on-time graduation. Finally, principals felt strongly about not giving up their efforts to redirect long-term suspended students' behavior and address individual needs, and were supportive of strategies that remove the long-term suspended student from their base school while maintaining consistent communication with the student, school, and family (Factor Four). Implications and recommendations for practice, policy, and research that emerged from the study are discussed.
Smith, Andre Charles. (April 2016). LONG-TERM SUSPENSIONS: EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES TO KEEP STUDENTS ENGAGED IN SCHOOLING (Doctoral Dissertation, East Carolina University). Retrieved from the Scholarship. (http://hdl.handle.net/10342/5382.)
Smith, Andre Charles. LONG-TERM SUSPENSIONS: EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES TO KEEP STUDENTS ENGAGED IN SCHOOLING. Doctoral Dissertation. East Carolina University, April 2016. The Scholarship. http://hdl.handle.net/10342/5382. June 18, 2018.
Smith, Andre Charles, “LONG-TERM SUSPENSIONS: EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES TO KEEP STUDENTS ENGAGED IN SCHOOLING” (Doctoral Dissertation., East Carolina University, April 2016).
Smith, Andre Charles. LONG-TERM SUSPENSIONS: EFFECTIVE STRATEGIES TO KEEP STUDENTS ENGAGED IN SCHOOLING [Doctoral Dissertation]. Greenville, NC: East Carolina University; April 2016.
East Carolina University