Anthony Scott

Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Thurman, Alfonzo

Degree Name

Ed.D. (Doctor of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Leadership in Educational and Sport Organizations


African American elementary schools--Michigan--Detroit; African American elementary schools--Wisconsin--Milwaukee; Teacher-principal relationships--Michigan--Detroit; Teacher-principal relationships--Wisconsin--Milwaukee; African American students--Michigan--Detroit; African American students--Wisconsin--Milwaukee; African American students--Social conditions; African American students--Michigan--Detroit--Case studies; African American students--Wisconsin--Milwaukee--Case studies


This qualitative case study is designed to gain insight into the education of African-American students that is based on the students' cultural heritage. This study explores the role the principal plays and the impact that occurs through the principal's implementation of aligning the culture of the school and its stakeholders with the African-American students' culture. The major components of the investigation include the connections between the cultural values, perceptions of the African-American students and the schools, the professional relationship between the principal and the teachers, and the strategies, initiatives and practices that the teachers use to convince the students to employ achievement orientated behavior. In this case study, two urban elementary African-American Immersion Schools were observed. The classrooms observed in these schools ranged from pre-school through eighth grade. One of the African-American Immersion Schools is in Detroit, Michigan and the other is in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Data collection consisted of classroom observation using field notes, an observation instrument, and interviews with the principals, teachers, and African-American students. Three major findings resulted from this study. First, the principal must be committed not to do “business as usual” by omitting the race and culture of the students. The second major finding is that the dominant ingredient for the successful academic achievement of the African-American students is grounding the students in their own identity and treating them as subjects being educated rather than as objects of a scientific investigation. The third major finding was that building character through self-reliance, self-acceptance, and being self-determined facilitates the acquisition of knowledge that also satisfies the mandates imposed upon students through the administration of high stake standardized tests.


Includes bibliographical references (pages [147]-157)


[xii], 180 pages




Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type