Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)


Educational Leadership

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Russell F. West, Nancy Dishner

Committee Members

Leslie Perry, Louise L. MacKay, Terrence A. Tollefson


This study describes and compares the reading habits and attitudes of students and parents in Title I and Non-Title I schools. The study was conducted because reading is an important basic skill that all children must acquire. The information gathered can be used to help parents provide beneficial experiences for their children in reading.

The literature review addresses literature and research related to factors identified as impacting readiness for school and reading achievement in elementary-age students. Research indicates that family structure, amount of time children spend watching television, availability of learning tools, and home literacy activities may be related to school readiness and academic success.

The population consisted of third, fourth, and fifth grade students and their parents in three school systems in northeast Tennessee. Title I schools included those with a 75% or higher free or reduced lunch rate. Two survey instruments were used û a parent questionnaire and a student questionnaire. Data collection consisted of letters to directors of school systems requesting permission for schools to participate in the study, and letters to principals, including the purpose of the study and asking permission to administer surveys. After securing permissions, materials were sent to teachers, who helped coordinate the study at the school level. The data were analyzed, using frequencies and percentages, with tables, charts, and figures. The questions on the surveys were analyzed to answer the four research questions.

This study found that, when compared to students and parents in Non-Title I schools, students and parents in Title I schools were less likely to read at home for enjoyment, use the public library, or read magazines and newspapers. Results demonstrate that students and parents in Title I schools, overall, read less than students and parents in Non-Title I schools, reported having fewer books at home of their own, reported having fewer educational materials at home, and students were found to read to their parents less often. Both students in Title I and Non-Title I schools reported watching television every day, although the amount of time they watch varied.

Document Type

Dissertation - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.