Campus Location

Dallas Campus (Online)

Date of Award


Document Type



Organizational Leadership

Degree Name

Doctor of Education

Committee Chair or Primary Advisor

Christie Bledsoe

Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor

Julie Lane

Third Committee Member or Committee Reader

Jason Mixon


Implementing intentionally designed interventions to improve students’ academic performance has been a focus of educational stakeholders for decades. However, the implementation of academic interventions for average-achieving students, particularly during their freshman year of high school, appears to be lacking. The purpose of this qualitative grounded theory study was to explore designed interventions implemented by high school administrators from two unified school districts in California that focused on the academic performance of middle-achieving students during their ninth-grade year. This qualitative grounded theory study focused on the perspective of a purposive sampling group of high school administrators, which included principals, assistant principals, and counselors. Seventeen administrators participated in a 5-point Likert scale survey that required them to answer 10 questions focused on the importance and use of interventions to improve the academic performance of ninth-grade average achieving students on their campus. The sample field was narrowed to six administrators who provided deeper insight regarding interventions used on their campus for forgotten middle students. Traditional coding methods such as the use of paper, pen, and labels combined with the digital technology of MAXQDA allowed for a thorough analysis of all qualitative data. Key findings from the research study indicated that it is important to implement interventions for average-achieving students early during their freshman year since motivation is critical to keeping students engaged and establishing a foundation for future success. Also, student-faculty relationships were recognized as an imperative to the success of interventions on a school campus. Administrators acknowledged the important role that the home environment serves toward the success of implementing interventions for average-achieving students. Finally, results revealed that most administrators who participated in the study confirmed average achieving students are often vi overlooked regarding needed supports to improve their academic achievement. Future studies should focus on educator awareness, stakeholder roles, the effectiveness of implemented interventions on average achieving ninth-grade student performance, and the influence of interventions on a high school campus culture.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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