Murray State Theses and Dissertations



The purpose of this study was to investigate if there is a statistically significant difference between the ACT scores of students who were enrolled in Kentucky public school districts that completed a district wide strategic planning process during the 2016-2017, 2017-2018, 2018- 2019 or 2019-2020 school years and the ACT scores of students who were enrolled Kentucky public school districts that did not complete a district wide strategic planning process over the same time period. A survey was given to determine which school districts had implemented a strategic plan during the 2016-2017, 2017-2018, 2018-2019 or 2019-2020-time frame. For each district included in the study, the researcher retrieved data from Kentucky Department of Education on (a) mean composite ACT scores and (b) the percentage of students meeting ACT benchmarks in English, Mathematics, and Reading for the following school years: 2015-2016 and 2020-2021. Descriptive statistics were computed for ACT performance in each subset. To determine if ACT performance varied significantly among the six subgroups, the researcher used one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA). The research revealed a lack of evidence supporting the use of strategic planning as a means for improving student outcomes as measured by ACT performance. The research exposed a decline between the baseline (2015-2016) academic year and the post-strategic planning implementation year (2020-2021) for all subgroups of the study. Discussion connects this study to existing research and literature, but also notes the impact of the COVID 19 pandemic on the overall student achievement decline during the time frame of the study. Keywords: Strategic planning, college and career readiness, ACT

Year manuscript completed


Year degree awarded


Author's Keywords

Strategic planning, College and Career Readiness, ACT

Degree Awarded

Doctor of Education


Educational Studies, Leadership and Counseling


College of Education & Human Services

Dissertation Committee Chair

Randal Wilson

Committee Chair

Randal Wilson

Committee Member

Jim Evans

Committee Member

Ben Littlepage

Document Type