Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Nancy Schneider

Second Advisor

William Emrick

Third Advisor

Larry Matthews


One of the main responsibilities of a school system is to train citizens to be productive members of society. To that end, educators are charged with the responsibility of helping students learn knowledge and skills that will be beneficial to their existence beyond high school. In recent years, growing criticism has emerged from business leaders and parents that schools are not doing a good enough job preparing students for life after high school. As a result, educators have worked to implement accountability systems that would raise the stakes for its students. As a result, the development and implementation of exit exams has become more prevalent in the U.S. over the last few years.

Currently, Francis Howell High School does not have an exit exam policy on the books. However, the demands to increase student achievement have become a primary focus of the district due to recent federal legislation and state accreditation criteria. The following thesis investigates current research on exit testing as well as identifying the opinions of the students, teachers and parents of Francis Howell High School on this topic. This information was analyzed to determine how the community of Francis Howell High School would support a decision to implement any type of exit exam policy. Based on the views of the stakeholders, a recommendation was also introduced. This proposal could be reviewed by the Francis Howell School District's Strategic Planning Committee to determine if the topic should be investigated any further.

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