Date of Award

8-2017

Rights

© 2017 Angela Coffman Ringley

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Department

Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Ella Benson

Second Advisor

Peter Harrison

Third Advisor

Glyn Cowlishaw

Abstract

Extracurricular activities are a significant part of the school experience for many students, but there are concerns about the demands placed on students and the overscheduling of their after-school time. The purpose of this qualitative case study was to examine longitudinal middle school student outcomes based on one school’s efforts to provide the benefits of extracurricular activities by offering those activities during the regular school day. This study explored the nature of the relationship between middle school, school-based extracurricular participation and subsequent student views of school connection. The study was conducted in an independent, private, Pre-K through 12th grade school with data collected from interviews with junior and senior students who had participated in the program as middle school students. The collected data showed students had positive recollections from participating in mixed grade level activities and in developing connections to the people in the school. The data showed that offering the extracurricular activities during the regular school day allowed students to participate in more activities and experience the benefits of participation such as developing friendships and exploring areas of interest. The data also showed that students viewed the extracurricular enrichment activities offered at the end of the school day as fun and stress-relieving in a regular school day filled with academic classes. This study offers recommendations for school leaders working to increase school engagement through extracurricular activities.