Publication Date


DOI (Digital Object Identifier)



Leadership and Higher Education


Doctor of Education (Ed.D)

Dissertation Chair

Jose W. Lalas, Ph.D.

Committee Members

Carol Ann Franklin, Ed.D.

Christopher H. Hunt, Ed.D.


social class, engagement, influences, high school, policies, dropout rate


Educational Leadership


This qualitative study focused on social class and its influences on student engagement in high school settings. The study employed a narrative inquiry approach. Through the examination of narratives of the participants, this study sought to discover the ways in which students, parents, teachers, and administrators think about, view, and act upon their understanding of social class as it relates to student engagement. The researcher conducted the study at three high schools in the Desert Mountain region of San Bernardino County located in Southern California. The schools were selected based upon their socioeconomic makeup as measured by the percentage of students who qualified for free and/or reduced lunch (PFRL). The narratives were all screened for emerging themes related to social class and student engagement. In addition, the narratives were analyzed to find instances of commonalities and differences. The results of this study revealed that social class is identified in various manners; it also revealed that although social class plays an important role in education, social class alone does not predict academic achievement. The results of this study may aid in increases to graduation rates, thereby an obvious reduction in dropout rates especially as it relates to social class.


© 2014 Tayari A. A. Kuanda

All Rights Reserved

ISBN: 9781321652970