Academic Factors Impacting the Performance of School Districts that Meet Standards and School Districts that Don't Meet Standards in Texas
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Purpose: The purpose of this explanatory research is to identify the factors that distinguish a school district, which meets standards from those, which do not meet standards. This paper will focus on a brief history of educational policies that impacted academic performance in the United States and a data driven analysis emphasizing school district performance in Texas. Method: This research paper explores four hypothesis (teacher pay, male teachers, teacher experience, and pupil to teacher ratio) developed from the Texas Education Agency Texas Academic Performance Report. A total of 26 school districts were selected for the 2016- 2017 academic year that did not meet requirements and were compared to 26 school districts that met standards. The comparison school districts were selected based on similar academic criteria to the school districts that did not meet requirements. Academic performance was then evaluated at both sets of school districts using aggregated data to create the framework for the data. After, a quantitative analysis is used to determine the significance of the academic results from the school districts chosen in Texas. Findings: The research hypothesis states that school districts that do not meet standards would have lower teacher pay, male teachers, teacher experience and higher pupil to teacher ratios than schools that met requirements. Actual results, however, only supported half of the hypotheses. The research found there is a significant difference in teacher pay and teaching experience in underperforming districts and districts that meet requirements.