Defense Date


Graduation Date

Summer 2009


Immediate Access

Submission Type


Degree Name



Interdisciplinary Doctoral Program for Education Leaders (IDPEL)


School of Education

Committee Chair

Gary Shank

Committee Member

Rick McCown

Committee Member

Lan Villella

Committee Member

Stanley Herman


Students with disabilities, Standards-based Instruction, Attendance rates


Students with disabilities have a higher rate of missed days of school as compared to their nondisabled peers. This dissertation will examine the effect Standards-based Instruction has on the school attendance rates of children with disabilities. The purpose is to determine whether rates of attendance will increase for students with disabilities who receive standards-based instruction over the period of the 2003 -2004, 2004 -2005, and 2006-2007 school years. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania implemented standards in mathematics and reading, writing, speaking, and listening in 1999. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has 500 public school districts. The Pennsylvania Department of Education has designated the districts into the categories of urban, suburban and rural. The study will be a quasi-experimental design because it will examine differences between pre-existing populations of students with disabilities attendance rates for each school district in Pennsylvania. The independent variables are time and density (urban, suburban, and rural) and the dependent variable is attendance records. To determine the effect of standards-based instruction on student attendance, the researcher will conduct a simple analysis on student attendance. A means comparison will be conducted using Average Daily Attendance (ADA) percentages for each school district for the school years of 2003-2004, 2004-2005, and 2006-2007. Data will be collected to compare ADA percentages between urban, suburban, and rural school districts. A 3 by 2 ANOVA will be conducted with density and time being the variable compared. This will be a repeated measures mixed design. Attendance rates will be obtained for a period of time; the school years of 2003-2004, 2004-2005, and 2006-2007 to determine if more exposure to Standards-based Instruction will increase school attendance rates for students with disabilities. Attendance rates will be obtained to determine if there is any improvement in the frequency of attendance after the implementation of SBI. Attendance records will be examined for the 2003-2004, 2004-2005, and 2006-2007 school years to determine the effect Standards-based Instruction has on attendance rates for children with disabilities. These school years are being examined to allow time for all the 500 districts to have developed curriculum plans which reflect the state standards in mathematics and reading.