Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctorate of Education, Ed.D.


College of Education



First Advisor

Christopher Maddox, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

John D'Aguanno, Ed.D.

Third Advisor

Janea Johnson, Ed.D.


Academic reform has been the impetus for failing districts to use triage as a tool to improve the scores of students close to the benchmark scores needed for proficiency. The purpose of this interpretative phenomenological study is to explore the lived experiences of 10 career and technical education (CTE) secondary teachers for the existence of triage as an effect of accountability threats on teachers who are moving students from failing to passing. The theoretical conceptual framework of the scientific management of Taylor and other organizational theories of Perrow, March, and Senge, provided guidance for understanding teachers’ behaviors from responses given during semistructured interviews. Through Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis, data was axle coded, and four superordinate themes emerged (a) the Administrator is accountable for the passing /failing status of the CTE school, and the teachers focus on their individualized programs (b) triage is utilized in CTE throughout the school year (c) different relationships are vital to the triage of students, and (d) the aftereffects of triage on the CTE teachers ranged from a sense of accomplishment to a concern about the present education system. The findings indicate triage is a natural tool used by teachers in CTE throughout the school year to improve student performance and the teachers have the capability to have input in the instructional choices of curriculum development.

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