All ETDs from UAB

Advisory Committee Chair

Mary Ann Bodine Al-Sharif

Advisory Committee Members

John Dantzler

Tony A Perry

Michele Jean Sims

Brandon Wolfe

Document Type


Date of Award


Degree Name by School

Doctor of Education (EdD) School of Education


The purpose of this study was to share the lived experiences of teachers regarding how they supported student achievement in a Title I high school. After almost 60 years of Title I initiatives, the achievement gap between students in poverty and other more affluent students has not changed in any statistically significant manner (Jimenez-Castellanos, 2010). Due to the lack of academic growth for students in Title I schools as compared to students in non-Title I schools, parents, policymakers, and other stakeholders have increased pressure on educators and educational researchers to identify student achievement barriers and implement the use of effective strategies to improve student proficiency. There is a paucity in the educational research literature regarding student achievement in Title I high schools. A borderlands theoretical approach was utilized by the researcher to create a comprehensive theoretical lens for the examination of this phenomenon. The central question for this phenomenological study was: What are the perceptions, lived experiences, and attitudes of educators working in a Title I high school in central Alabama regarding conditions that support student achievement? This study was conducted in a Title I high school in central Alabama. Six Title I high school educators participated in semi-structured interviews. After a data analysis of iv the interviews, the following eight themes emerged: (1) Journey to Becoming a Title I Teacher, (2) Stakeholder Challenges, (3) Teacher Support Communities, (4) Positive Teacher-Student Relationships, (5) Training/Resources that Helped Educators Support Student Success, (6) Student Support Strategies, (7) Community Partners Support, and (8) Educator Cultural Awareness. The findings of this study may inspire Title I educators to advocate for the implementation of programs to support their professional and personal wellbeing to equip Title I teachers with the knowledge and skillset necessary to support student academic growth and achievement. In addition, findings may also encourage Title I educators to acknowledge the societal constraints that create structural barriers and prevent students in Title I schools from experiencing the same opportunities as their peers from non-Title I schools.

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