Differences in graduation rates and postsecondary enrollment as a function of ethnicity/race, school poverty, and school size: A Texas multiyear investigation
Perez, Angeles M.
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The purpose of this journal ready dissertation was to ascertain the relationship of high school size with graduation rates and postsecondary enrollment status for students in Texas. In the first study, the relationship of school student enrollment percentages with graduation rates for Black, Hispanic and White graduates was examined. In the second study, the extent to which school poverty was related with graduation rates for Black, Hispanic, and White graduates was ascertained. Finally, in the third research article, the relationship between school poverty and postsecondary enrollment status of Texas graduates was determined. Analyzed in each empirical investigation were two years of statewide public school data. A non-experimental, causal-comparative research design (Johnson & Christensen, 2012) was utilized in this investigation. Archival data were obtained from the Texas Education Agency Academic Performance Report database for the 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 school years. The variables that were analyzed as a function of school size and school student enrollment poverty percentages for students in Texas were: graduation rates, enrollment in Texas higher education institution rates, and completion of one year of Texas higher education without remediation rates. Statistically significant results were revealed in each of the three investigations. An examination of graduation rates for Black students as a function of school size revealed that Moderate-Size schools was the optimal size. Hispanic students however, had higher graduation percentages from Large-Size schools with White students having higher graduation percentages from Small-Size schools. Graduation rates of Black, Hispanic, and White students differed by school student enrollment poverty percentages. For Black and Hispanic students, the highest graduate percentages were from High Poverty schools whereas Low Poverty schools had the highest graduate percentages for White students. Lastly, the postsecondary enrollment status of high school graduates differed as a function of school poverty. High Poverty schools had the lowest enrollment rates in higher education institutions and the lowest completion rates of one year of higher education without remediation. Results from this journal-ready dissertation were congruent with much of the recent empirical literature. Implications for policy and recommendations for research were provided.