Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Kay A. Keiser


High stakes testing warrants a lot of pressure on students in today’s classrooms. Students are continually preparing for yet another assessment or pre-assessment monthly so data can be readily collected and analyzed. Schools are always under the academic microscope and are expected to perform despite all obstacles they may face. What is a school district to do, and how does a school district tackle raising the academic bar for all students despite the obstacles? Small group pullout programs have been used in education for many years to help all types of students, ranging from students with disabilities to students with high academic ability. In this world of the needed pressure to raise student achievement, do pull out programs help improve academic achievement for all students? The literature review evaluated a multitude of reasons as to why small group pullouts are effective and ineffective. Pullout programs in education have been used to work with students with behavior disabilities, academic disabilities and academic abilities, in all grade levels. In Omaha, Nebraska, students at one urban middle school are trying to beat the academic odds through taking advantage of small group pullouts during the school day. Students are identified for this program, not by whether they are in special education, in a gifted program, or even in a Response to Intervention program. Students are identified by how they perform academically on their state assessment scores the previous school year. The significance of this pullout program at this Midwestern, urban middle school has made an impact on how academic support is utilized throughout the school year.


A Dissertation Presented to the Faculty of the Graduate College of the University of Nebraska in Partial Fulfillment of Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Education. Copyright 2014 Carrie L. Rath.

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