Closing the achievement gap : the implementation of direct instruction in Whiteville City schools

UNCW Author/Contributor (non-UNCW co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Vicki D. Frink-Lawrence (Creator)
The University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW )
Web Site:

Abstract: In Whiteville City Schools, beginning third grade students have a reading achievement gap as evidenced by students who score Level 3 or 4 on the Third Grade Pre-Test. Historically, the largest gap has been between African American males and White females. The achievement gap also extends to a gap in mathematics proficiency. In addition to having achievement gaps by race and gender, overall third grade students in Whiteville City Schools have proficiency levels that are lower that the state average and lower than those of comparable local schools. This thesis reports on an effort to close and eventually eliminate the achievement gap and raise proficiency overall; specifically, at the primary school, Direct Instruction was implemented as the reading program. Direct Instruction has proven successful as an effective method of instructing all children, particularly African American, in reading. The research has shown that success in reading is effective in closing achievement gaps. Findings show that, after adopting Direct Instruction at this one school, student achievement and proficiency increased and the achievement gap closed.

Additional Information

A Thesis Submitted to the University of North Carolina Wilmington in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science
Language: English
Date: 2009
Academic achievement--North Carolina--Whiteville, Educational tests and measurements--United States--Whiteville, Minority students--Education, Performance in children, Reading--Ability testing, School improvement programs--North Carolina--Whiteville, Schools--Evaluation
Performance in children
Academic achievement -- North Carolina -- Whiteville
Reading -- Ability testing
Educational tests and measurements -- United States -- Whiteville
Schools -- Evaluation
Minority students -- Education
School improvement programs -- North Carolina -- Whiteville

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