An analysis of the entropy index diversity scores of selected North Carolina urban high schools and the impact on teacher quality, student achievement, and graduation rates

Robert Pernell Taylor, Fayetteville State University

Abstract

The primary purpose of this study was to examine the differences in teacher quality, student achievement, and graduation rates among select North Carolina urban high schools based on their racial segregation when measured by the entropy index. The entropy index is a measure of evenness among racial groups used to determine the level of segregation in a school and school district. The sample population consisted of 67 traditional high schools located in six urban school districts in North Carolina. ^ The research design for this study was both quantitative and inferentially analytical. The diversity data were analyzed to determine the impact on teacher quality, student achievement, and graduation rates, using a t-test for independent means and a one-way analysis of variance. ^ Results of this study indicated that student diversity has an impact on the quality of teachers, student academic achievement, and graduation rates. Several themes emerged from this study. The first theme was that Entropy Index calculations identified very desirable diversity scores for school districts which indicated that students were evenly distributed throughout school districts, but highly segregated schools, either black or white were present. A second theme was that school districts with few or no minority high schools performed much better on the three indicators of teacher quality, student academic achievement, and graduation rates. This performance was present as a district aggregate and for individual schools. The results also revealed that the presence or absence of white students had a profound impact on teacher quality, student achievement, and graduation rates. Additionally, it was revealed that diversity had a nominal effect on teacher quality, but majority white schools had higher teacher quality than other schools. ^ The results of this research adds to the body of literature on student diversity, specifically aiding school administrators in understanding and identifying the areas where diversity has the most impact on school communities and how this knowledge will enhance the ability of school administrators in developing quality student assignment policies. ^

Subject Area

Education, Administration|Education, Secondary

Recommended Citation

Robert Pernell Taylor, "An analysis of the entropy index diversity scores of selected North Carolina urban high schools and the impact on teacher quality, student achievement, and graduation rates" (January 1, 2009). ETD Collection for Fayetteville State University. Paper AAI3406573.
http://digitalcommons.uncfsu.edu/dissertations/AAI3406573

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