Term of Award

Winter 1999

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Administration

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Committee Chair

Ron Davison

Committee Member 1

Steve Jenkins

Committee Member 2

Tak C. Chan

Committee Member 3

Stephanie Kenney

Committee Member 4

James Bergin

Abstract

This study examined the combination of variables which were thought to relate to the incidence and severity of disciplinary problems of high school age children. Specifically, the variables family type, school discipline referrals, GPA, family income level, diagnosed psychological counseling, student support team placement, special education placement, student absentee rate, parental educational level, and extracurricular participation were examined as factors which were thought to relate to the discipline characteristics associated with each type student.

Initially, the subjects were dichotomized by discipline infractions. The subjects who did not have any discipline referrals at school were placed into one group and those that had one or more disciplinary referrals were placed into another group. The specific characteristics of each of these two groups were then described. Finally, the variables that significantly related to discipline incidence were identified using discriminant analysis. These variables included: GPA, parent's educational level, and being from a rural school district. GPA and parent's educational level were found to be inversely related to discipline incidence and those students who attend rural schools were less likely to be disciplined at school than their peers in urban and suburban settings.

To determine which variables relate to discipline severity, a severity index was calculated. This index was based on the frequency and severity of a student's cumulative disciplinary infractions for the current school year. Using this index, a summary of specific variables was included. Finally, a multiple regression analysis was conducted to determine which variables were significantly related to severity. GPA and grade level were the only variables identified that were significantly related to discipline severity. There was an indirect relationship between GPA (and grade level) and discipline severity. vi

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