Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Ed.S. in Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Jill Cabrera-Davis

Second Advisor

Douglas Davis

Third Advisor

Ryan Niemeyer

Relational Format



Schools and school leaders are charged to provide equitable educational opportunities and ensure the success for all students no matter their scholastic ability giving students access to an education that is culturally responsive. Despite this charge, African-American male students receive exclusionary punishment at disparaging rates which contributes to the widening achievement gap between white and black students. The purpose of this applied research study was to decrease the rate at which African-American males are referred to the office. This study analyzes the implementation of two elements: engaging teachers in a book study on culturally responsive teaching strategies and targeted counseling with students with chronic behavioral patterns. Focus groups, surveys, observations, and interviews were all employed as means of gathering data. The findings from this study indicate when teachers employ culturally responsive teaching strategies and students receive social-emotional support the existing discipline disparity decreases.



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