An evaluative study of the 1972-74 standards of quality and objectives for public schools in Virginia
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
On November 3, 1970, the voters of Virginia approved a new Constitution. Within Article VIII, the education article, was the constitutional provision for a new statewide program to "seek to insure that an educational program of high quality is established and continually maintained" throughout the Commonwealth. An important aspect of this program, The Standards of Quality and Objectives, was the directive that each school division develop systematic, multi-year plans to guide the quest for quality.;The purpose of this study was: (1) to determine whether progress has been made by Virginia's school divisions toward reaching a major goal of the Standards of Quality and Objectives which has usually been stated as, "The student will become competent in fundamental academic skills; (2) to examine the relationship between multi-year planning and the progress made toward reaching this goal; and (3) to examine the use of time-series data and analysis on unobtrusive measures to conduct a summative evaluation of a statewide educational program.;The population in this study consisted of all the public school divisions in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The twenty-one divisions comprising the sample were drawn from those divisions whose 1975-80 Five-Year School Improvement Plans were ranked as high, average, or low in overall quality on a rating instrument especially designed for this purpose in an earlier doctoral study. Two types of data were collected for these divisions. The first type included measures specifically identified in the 1972-74 Standards of Quality and Objectives. These included overageness in grades K-7, attendance in grades K-12, and scores on standardized tests of ability and achievement. The second type of data included unobtrusive measures, including retentions in grades 8-12, K-12, 11 and 4; overageness in grades 8-12, K-12, 11 and 4; attendance in grades K-7 and 8-12; high school graduates; and high school dropouts. The source of data was state records.;It was hypothesized that significant changes would occur in the levels of both types of measures during the 1972-74 period and that school divisions with multi-year plans rated high would have significantly higher levels of performance than those divisions with plans rated low. The archival data were organized in graphic and tabular form. The TSX and CORREL computer programs were used to test for significant differences in the levels of measures before and after the introduction of the Standards of Quality and Objectives. Insufficient data points existed to permit the use of the computer programs and the data were analyzed through visual inspection.;The following conclusions were drawn. Performance objectives regarding the measures stated in the Standards of Quality and Objectives were achieved. While improvements in performance did occur during and after the 1972-74 period, the historical trend preceding the introduction of the Standards of Quality and Objectives was such that one cannot assign causality for the changes to the Standards themselves. School divisions with multi-year plans rated high tended to perform better than those divisions with plans rated low.;Although statistical tests of significance were not possible, the consistent trends of the data, when examined as a time-series, led to the conclusion that the 1972-74 Standards of Quality and Objectives tended to reinforce trends that had been in evidence for several years. In addition, other variables, especially size, could have influenced the performance of school divisions.
© The Author
Smith, Norman Steven., "An evaluative study of the 1972-74 standards of quality and objectives for public schools in Virginia" (1980). Dissertations, Theses, and Masters Projects. William & Mary. Paper 1539618432.