Degree Date


Document Type

Dissertation - Public Access

Degree Name

Ed.D. Doctor of Education

Academic Discipline

Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Norman Weston

Second Advisor

Dr. Jack Denny

Third Advisor

Dr. Valerie Owen


The change leadership plan examines redefining college and career readiness for students in alternative programs. We know from research that all students need to have the necessary skills to be ready for post-secondary employment or to attend colleges; however, students attending a special education alternative program were not successfully transitioning back to their high school and tended to stay in the district’s program until graduation (Gruhn, 2016). Therefore, this change leadership plan used Wagner’s (2006) 4 C’s framework to examine the areas of context, culture, conditions and competencies. Focusing on 10 practices of college of career and college readiness (Brand et al., 2013), data workshops were utilized to collect data to determine the current levels of college readiness and areas to focus on for improvement. Stakeholders in the data workshops included staff and students. Research indicates the criteria to transition students back to the high school, a known procedure in the handbook, was too difficult for the students to achieve on a consistent basis. Students did not typically transition back to the high school and students did not feel successful or understand what the term “success” meant. Staff was interested in improving outcomes for students and determined through a data workshop and a survey that the students needed a more flexible schedule, needed better technology, more resources for vocational training and needed to understand how to monitor their own progress.