WHAT SCHOOLS CAN DO: AN EXPLORATION OF PERSONAL AND SCHOOL FACTORS IN YOUTH SEXTING BEHAVIORS AND RELATED ATTITUDES
AuthorBoden, Joshua M.
Committee memberDuCette, Joseph P.
Gross, Steven Jay
Permanent link to this recordhttp://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12613/823
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AbstractAs social technologies become more integrated into students’ lives, new means of communication have emerged, along with novel problem behaviors with significant consequences for students’ well-being. One of these is the sending of sexualized images via cell phone, referred to as “sexting”. An understanding of how and why some students choose to sext is important for schools to appropriately prepare for sexting-related incidents. This study explored some of the personal and environmental correlates of the behavior, including gender, thrill-seeking, impulsivity, perceived school experience, and related attitudes about the normalcy and risk of the behavior. Participants were college undergraduates from a large urban university, retrospectively reporting about their high school experience. Results indicated that the majority of students did not send sexts in high school. However, of those who did, students who sexted exclusively with romantic partners had significantly more positive engagement in school. Students with lower feelings of connectedness, academic motivation, and social belonging in high school tended to sext in riskier ways. Additionally, recent high school graduates were asked if and how schools should effectively educate students about the risks of sexting. These perspectives were assessed through survey questions and a focus group discussion session. Results suggested that students do recognize the potential consequences of the behavior, regardless of what teachers tell them. They feel that, rather than using “scare tactics”, school personnel should try to understand the social and relational context in which the behavior occurs. Limitations of this research are discussed, along with implications and recommendation for practice and future research.
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The effects of school uniforms on school climate in elementary schoolIkpa, Vivian W.; Davis, James Earl, 1960-; DuCette, Joseph P.; Sanford-DeShields, Jayminn (Temple University. Libraries, 2009)This research sought to explore the link between mandatory school uniforms and a positive school climate. Beginning in the late 1980's public schools implemented mandatory school uniforms policies in urban school districts. The trend gained momentum when President Clinton included school uniforms in his 1996 State of the Union Address. Directly following the speech was a publication by the United States Department of Education on school uniforms that was distributed to all school districts in the country. Often the primary reason for implementing school uniforms was gang violence. Other reason included increased school safety and decreases in violence. Further, proponents believed uniforms would increase academic achievement and improve school climate. Research on the effects of school uniforms is limited and conflicting. Most studies available to date were conducted in urban settings. However, school uniforms have infiltrated rural and suburban schools districts as well. Two school districts in suburban Eastern Pennsylvania participated in this study. One school district had a mandatory school uniform policy. The other did not. Using a school climate survey and school uniform questionnaire, students in grades 4-6 and elementary school teachers rated the school climate in their respective schools. School climate was rated on seven subscales on the student school climate survey and 10 subscales on the faculty school climate survey. A t-test was performed on the data set to determine the difference between sample means and a factor analysis was conducted on the student school climate survey. Further, three themes emerged from the short answer questions on the student uniform questionnaire. The results of the research found that there was not a statistically significant relationship between a mandatory school uniform policy and elementary school students' perceptions of school climate. Of the seven subscales, students who wore school uniforms rated their peer relationships higher than students without school uniforms. Additionally, they rated the required rigor higher. Students that did not wear school uniforms rated the teacher-student relationship higher. When responding to the open ended questions, three themes emerged. They were expression, atmosphere and family. In essence, students were not in favor of wearing uniforms and believed uniforms suppressed their freedom of expression. Teachers responded similarly. The results showed no statistically significant relationship between a mandatory school uniform policy and teacher perceptions of school climate. Only two subscales showed any significant difference between the two groups of teachers. They were teacher-administrator relationship and student achievement. In both respects, teachers in the district without uniforms responded more positively. The results of this study should be used when reviewing current policy or considering new policy on school uniforms.
White Representation in Neighborhood Schools: School Funding, Nonprofit Investment, and Academic OutcomesKlugman, Joshua; Goyette, Kimberly; Cordes, Sarah; Candipan, Jennifer (Temple University. Libraries, 2021)My dissertation examines the enrollment patterns of White children in traditional U.S. public schools in 2010. I link schools to their attendance boundaries to compare the percentage of White children living in a catchment area to the percentage of White children who attend the local neighborhood school. I find that just under a third of schools are roughly representative of their catchment area (29%), the plurality are underrepresented White (40%), and the remaining 31% are overrepresented White. Descriptive analyses determine that White underrepresentation is more common in urban schools. White underrepresented schools tend to be in poorer neighborhoods and have a higher-than-average share of students in poverty and students with limited English proficiency. I investigate whether there is a connection between White representation and school quality outcomes. I focus on four facets of school quality that I hypothesize might be responsive to White representation: 1) school funding metrics, 2) school-supporting nonprofit presence, 3) standardized test scores, and 4) Gifted and Talented programming. Overall, the findings here offer mixed support for the theory of “opportunity hoarding,” in which White underrepresented schools receive fewer resources. Taken together, descriptive analyses find that White underrepresentation is largely associated with negative outcomes. White underrepresented schools have less public and charitable funding than their peers. White underrepresented schools are lower performing academically than White overrepresented schools, although they are not clearly academically different from representative White schools. White underrepresented schools are not necessarily less likely to have a GAT program, but when they do have a GAT program, it disproportionately targets White students. Furthermore, multivariate analyses reveal that the bivariate relationships between White representation and school outcomes are not entirely explained by the percentage of White students in a school, nor other covariates. This suggests that there is a meaningful distinction between White representation and the percentage of White students in a school. In other words, White representation tells us something about a school, net of the presence of White students. However, this was not the case for every multivariate model in the study. I find a significant negative association between White representation and school funding. White underrepresented schools have significantly lower mean teacher salaries and per-pupil salary expenditures, net of the percentage of White students within the school. This could be evidence that disproportionately low White enrollment leads to diminished school resources or less experienced teachers. Alternately, it could be that White families are more adept than non-White families at avoiding under-resourced schools. I find no evidence of a connection between White representation and whether a school has a school-supporting nonprofit. Instead, the economic composition of the school appears to be a more important driver of school nonprofit presence and nonprofit revenue. I also find no connection between White representation and test scores. However, White representation appears to influence the racial composition of GAT programs. Schools that are less White than their neighborhoods tend to have GAT programs that are significantly Whiter than the schools.
A PHENOMENOLOGICAL STUDY OF CHARTER SCHOOL STUDENTS AND PARENTS IN ONE RURAL SCHOOL DISTRICT: WHY THEY GO, THE NATURE OF THEIR EXPERIENCES, AND WHY SOME CHOOSE TO LEAVESmith, Michael W. (Michael William), 1954-; Gross, Steven Jay; Hall, John; McGinley, Christopher W. (Temple University. Libraries, 2017)Two coinciding trends in education have given rise to this study: the political cycle of school reform and the heterogeneous nature of the charter school landscape. Since Minnesota became the first state to pass a charter law in 1991, the dramatic increase in the number of charter schools has provided opportunities for researchers to try to categorize the success of charter schools. Although the number of charter schools have almost doubled from 3,689 to 6,004 from 2005-2006 to 2012-2013, an average of approximately 500 charters have opened and more than 160 charter schools have closed per year during these eight years of the available data. However, students who attend charter schools do not have a monolithic educational experience. The purpose of this paper is to examine the perceptions of students and parents in relation to enrolling in a specific brick and mortar and several cyber charter schools, and if applicable, leaving said schools. This qualitative study explores the lived experiences of students and parents who reside in a rural public school district and chose to attend a cyber charter or brick and mortar charter school. Survey responses and information gathered from interviews of students and their parents/guardians were analyzed to illuminate the research questions. While the results will not be generalizable, this study has led to an understanding of what led these students to enroll in charter schools and if applicable, why they chose to leave. More specifically, three themes emerged from the data: (1) Family members, primarily mothers, significantly impacted students’ decisions to employ choice to enroll in charters; (2) The lack of extra-curricular activities in charters had a substantially negative impact on students’ experiences and (3) Educational quality was the foremost characteristic named in the determination to transfer out of a charter school. While there has been research on charter schools separate from studies on perceptions of school age children with respect to education programming, this examination indicates the need to unite charter research and student voice aspects within the realm of educational research.