Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Gary Schnellert


The purpose of this case study was to identify gradual growth and improvement in test scores of black students compared to white students for St. Cloud School District 742 as showed in NWEA and MCA testing. The achievement gap in the state of Minnesota has been a pervasive issue that has long been discussed and analyzed. School districts the size of St. Cloud have seen dramatic shifts in demographics that have caused administrators and teachers to change their instructional approaches.

This study looked at specific programs, practices, and instructional strategies that recognized growth and improvement in state testing and assessment for black students in St. Cloud School District 742. An increase in Somali immigrants along with a steady number of African-American families in the St. Cloud area has resulted in a significant number of students who either were new to the country or below grade level proficiencies in the areas of math and reading. From 2004-2006, the district saw a double digit drop in proficiency scores of students in math and reading from the previous school year of 2003-2004. District enrollment of black students increased 20% in one year's time (in 2004-2005) and continued to increase until school year 2005-2006 when School District 742 implemented new programs, practices, and strategies to help address the decline in math and reading proficiency scores. Within a three year period after the implementation of new interventions, the district saw an increase in NWEA reading and math scores and improvement in MCA scores (This information was obtained by accessing the Viewpoint database, a database containing confidential information about individual students in the school district. Viewpoint data is protected by federal and state law, and local district policy, and therefore, no citation has been given.).