Term of Award

Fall 2001

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Administration

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Committee Chair

Tak C. Chan

Committee Member 1

Bryan W. Griffin

Committee Member 2

Fred M. Page, Jr.

Committee Member 3

Michael D. Richardson

Committee Member 4

Jody J. Woodrum

Abstract

This study was intended to determine if certain financial resources were related to academic achievement in Georgia public schools. Four predictor variables representing different financial resources were compared with a criterion variable representing different financial resources were compared with a criterion variable representing differences were statistically held constant to reduce their possible effects. The four financial variables were Per-Pupil Expenditure, Average Teacher Salary, Per-Pupil Local Revenue, and Per-Pupil District Wealth, all measured by dollar amounts. The criterion variable was the Georgia High School Graduation Test Pass Rate, measured by percent for each school district. The three covariates were socioeconomic status, race, and special education enrollment, all measured by a percent for each school district.

Participants in the study were the 180 public school systems in Georgia, although seven were excluded because they did not have secondary schools, but instead transported their students to a nearby district (n = 173). The most recently available data were obtained from the Georgia Department of Education (GDOE) in August 2001 for the 1999-2000 school year. Following the organization and summation of descriptive statistics, correlation coefficients were reported and compared. Next, a simultaneous multiple regression analysis was conducted, and the results were reported. Since interaction between the variables modified certain relationships, it was also necessary to show how these relationships were modified. The results were conclusive. Average Teacher Salary was found to have a statistically significant (p < .05) and moderately positive relationship (r = .41) with academic achievement. However, none of the remaining three financial variables (Per-Pupil Expenditure, Per-Pupil Local Revenue, Per-Pupil District Wealth) had anything more than a weak relationship with academic achievement. The analysis supported the value of Average Teacher Salary as a predictor of academic achievement. The findings of this study imply that when financial resources were used for higher average teacher salaries, the results were higher academic achievement.

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