Date of Award

January 2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Sherryl Houdek


Low academic performance among Native American students has been a problem for several decades. Some researchers like Bradbury et al. (2012) have studied issues related to education, but have not targeted elementary and secondary school students’ academic performances. More needs to be done, specifically on Native American students’ academic achievements, to understand the problem and provide data that could potentially ameliorate the situation. Data on state assessments from North Dakota’s Department of Public Instruction has shown low academic performances for students from kindergarten through 12th grades in school districts with high Native American student enrollments (, 2018). This quantitative study examined approximately 90 teachers’ perceptions available within three school districts with high Native American student enrollment regarding Native American students’ school attendance, student-teacher relationships, students’ quality of life at home, and parental involvement with students’ education in relation to students’ academic performances. A survey with Likert-type questions or statements were used to survey teachers’ perceptions. Out of 90 available teachers in the three school districts, only 48 or 53.3% responded to the survey. Results were summarized descriptively; one-way ANOVA and t-tests were conducted to compare perceptions of elementary, middle, and high school teachers on students’ academic performances. Implications for improving student academic performances were discussed in Chapter V, and recommendations for teachers, educational leaders, and further study were made.