Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education



First Advisor

Dr. Sherrie Wisdom

Second Advisor

Dr. Michelle Chism

Third Advisor

Dr. Kenya Cody


School districts in Missouri are responsible for public K-12 education and must be accredited to educate children. As a result, there is an evoking interest, demanding attention in Missouri public schools' quality and the students who transfer from unaccredited, critically low-performing schools to accredited, significantly betterperforming schools. These students have a higher risk of failing academically or dropping out of school and transitioning successfully into adulthood. Therefore, through this study, students, parents/guardians, and teachers tell their stories to empower the public to work together to raise all students' achievement in school, close the poverty and opportunity gap in education, and increase educators' strategies in supporting student learning. Examining the primary causes of low-performing schools will give the community a historical look at the modern school choice movement (Reeves, 2019). In general, perhaps people will learn how far school segregation and educational inequality have come or still exist after Brown v Board of Education over six decades ago. This ethnographic study focuses on factors of disadvantaged students despite being enrolled in a better-performing school so that educators and policymakers understand the cultures and challenges facing transfer students. The main objectives are to improve the public's competency and improve instruction and achievement in general. This study is a narrative account with themes of 15 to 25 students and six to ten parents/guardians and teachers and uses qualitative methods to collect data. Interviews, observations, and surveys uncover experiences and perceptions and disclose in-depth information around transitioning. This study offers a realistic view of school climate, teacher-student relationships, and social and academic adjustments. Moreover, it presents a family-school relationship to determine how parents/guardians view the school and its outreach efforts to connect, communicate, and explain new families’ processes.


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