Abstract

This concurrent multiple methods study was to inform the work at Ontario Christian School (OCS) related to student-led conferences in grades K-3rd during the 2009-2010 school year. OCS elementary parent perceptions were explored regarding the benefits, if any, of student-led conferences in addition to how, if at all, student-led conferences have influenced parent awareness of K-3rd student academic performance, communication between parents and students in regards to school, parental expectations and parenting style, as well as their influence on student motivation and accountability. Participating parents completed a quantitative survey and a qualitative questionnaire. Five main findings resulted. First, the parents at OCS deemed student-led conferences as a beneficial practice at the school. Second, the number one perceived benefit was an increase in student self-pride and parents perceiving student-led conferences as helping students understand their academic achievements and the importance of self-evaluation. Third, student-led conferences resulted in academic discussions regarding school and they had a positive effect on parental expectations and parenting style. Fourth, parents at OCS viewed excitement and motivation as synonymous and this resulted in an extraordinary amount of student pride which increased student leadership skills and had a positive effect on their achievement and performance. Finally, the student pride gained was a key element that influenced student academic performance, motivation and achievement. Three conclusions were drawn from this study. 1. Student-led conferences provide greater opportunity for three-way communication among students, parents, and teachers around students' learning and achievement 2. Student-led conferences are means for OCS parents to take a more active role in their children's learning process and consequently parents are more likely to understand the academic needs of their children, what to expect academically, and how to support their learning 3. Student-led conferences hold students more accountable for their learning which results in increased student motivation, responsible behavior, and greater pride in accomplishment. Recommendations resulting from the study were to expand student-led conferences school wide, periodically evaluate their process, engage in grade level collaboration on the implementation process, evaluate academic data across the grade levels to ensure success, and strategically plan for future improvement.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (EdD) -- Educational leadership, administration and policy; Student-led parent conferences

Date of Award

2011

School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology

Department/Program

Education

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctorate

Faculty Advisor

Purrington, Linda;

COinS