Urban high-school students' low average level of academic achievement is a national problem. A lack of academic progress is a factor that contributes to students failing to graduate. In response to these urban high school student problems, a growing number of urban charter high schools have opened as an alternative to the traditional public high school. This growth has included a number of marine/maritime high schools. Public interest in marine/maritime high schools is growing, yet there has been no research on these marine/maritime schools.
This dissertation uses case study analyses of two urban marine/maritime high schools to address the following questions: Why do students choose to enroll and stay enrolled in marine/maritime high schools and how do demographic characteristics of students who enroll compare with characteristics of students attending local high schools? How does attending a marine/maritime high school affect outcomes in terms of student attitude, attendance, academic achievement, benchmark test scores, graduation, marine/maritime post-secondary education and career awareness? How do marine/maritime high schools address development of student character/personality characteristics and what challenges do these schools face in developing the marine/maritime programs at the school?
Findings from this study suggest that attending the study schools has made a difference for students in terms of student school attendance, test scores and graduation. The two schools have very similar attendance and graduation outcomes; however the school in Toledo has higher student achievement levels on benchmark tests. The study found the primary difference between the two study schools is in the extent of development, application, and integration of the marine/maritime material into and across the entire high school program in Toledo. Marine/maritime studies and programs may provide one pathway for urban high schools to improve student academic achievement.
|Advisor:||Perna, Laura W.|
|Commitee:||Dooley, Austin L., Lytle, James H., Perna, Laura W.|
|School:||University of Pennsylvania|
|School Location:||United States -- Pennsylvania|
|Source:||DAI-A 74/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Secondary education, Curriculum development, Vocational education|
|Keywords:||Hands-on learning, Maritime, Tactile, Underserved, Urban education|
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