Adopt-a-school programs: A study of the impact of partnerships in the United States Virgin Islands

Date of Award




Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


Educational Leadership

First Committee Member

John H. Croghan - Committee Chair


The purpose of this study was to investigate characteristics associated with successful adopt-a-school partnerships in the Virgin Islands.Forty adopt-a-school programs were in operation at the 18 schools surveyed. Respondents were the school volunteer coordinators and school adopters. All coordinators and adopters involved in the partnerships were included in the sample.Perceived success of the partnerships was determined through responses to the interviews. The effectiveness criteria were the extent to which: partnership goals and objectives were achieved, needs of the target population were met, goals and objectives complemented and supported the goals and objectives of the school, activities supported the achievement of partnership goals and resources had been allocated efficiently and equitably. Partnerships where the respondents indicated these criteria were met were identified as successful. Common elements of successful partnerships were examined by Ashe's Partnership Project Instrument adapted for this study.A multiple correlation method was used to identify those program factors that provided the largest contribution to the determination of a successful partnership. Tests were conducted to assess significant differences in the importance of the program factors variables.The research found that (a) Seven factors were significantly associated with program success as identified by both school coordinators and business adopters. These factors were resource dependence, resource flows, frequency of communication, interagency awareness, interagency agreement, perceived effectiveness and consensus. (b) Personal acquaintance was identified by school coordinators as significantly related to program success but not significantly related to program success by business adopters. (c) Resource flows, interagency awareness, interagency agreement, frequency of communication, resource dependence and personal acquaintance are the factors most significantly related to successful adopt-a-school programs.Major conclusions derived from the findings were that (a) Adopt-a-school partnership programs that are perceived to be high on frequency of communication, interagency awareness, interagency agreement, resource flows, resource dependence, consensus and perceived effectiveness are considered to be successful. (b) More successful adopt-a-school partnerships are characterized by their high degree of awareness of the partners' resources, formalization of the partnership agreement, interdependence of resources, frequent communication between partners, duration of acquaintance between partners' representatives, and the extent to which the partnership is mutually beneficial.


Education, Administration

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