Date of Graduation

12-2013

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Curriculum and Instruction (PhD)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Curriculum and Instruction

Advisor

Carleton R. Holt

Committee Member

Barbara C. Gartin

Second Committee Member

Wen-Juo Lo

Abstract

Today there exist a concern for the safety and success of students in the public education system. Families, educators, and community members are concerned with the physical, emotional, and mental well-being of students in an environment where incidents of violence are growing. Events like the school shootings at Jonesboro, Arkansas, and at Columbine High School left our nation concerned with the problems within the school system. Many believe that character education can be an effective solution. The purposes of this study are to describe key elements of one school's character education program, and to determine the impact that this program had on academics, attendance, and discipline incidents within that school.

The data in the study will be a result of document analysis in a single rural middle school consisting of students in grades 5-8, in a school where the teachers and community members perceived that discipline issues were out of control. The study is centered on the belief that character education will have a positive impact on attendance, academics, and the number of discipline incidents.