School of Education


Doctor of Education in Curriculum & Instruction (EdD)


Russel G. Yocum


At-risk, Communities of Practice, Early-Warning-Indicator-System, Multi-tiered System of Support, Multidimensional Intervention Program, Single Intervention Program


Education | Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research


Based on existing empirical research, schools continue to use single intervention programs for intervening on behalf of at-risk students despite the fact that those programs do not meet with significant success in decreasing dropout rates. The problem is that the phenomenon of multidimensional approaches to intervening on behalf of ninth-grade students has yet to be explored and understood. The purpose of this single case study was to describe the critical case of Local Case Management Teams utilizing a multidimensional approach to intervening on behalf of at-risk ninth grade students in a large suburban school district in Utah. The following research question guided this study: How do local case management teams describe their experiences in ninth-grade intervention/dropout prevention? The theory that guided this study was Communities of Practice by Lave and Wegner (1991) as it explains the relationship between Communities of Practice and Local Case Management Teams. A single case study design was utilized to provide an in-depth analysis of this critical case, bounded by time and activity, and using a variety of data collection procedures and analysis strategies over a sustained period. The participants were chosen using purposeful sampling. Data included interviews, observation, and document analysis and were analyzed using traditional case study analysis methods including memoing, pattern matching, within-case synthesis, and resulted in the development of several themes. Time, accountability, knowledge, escalating intrinsic and extrinsic barriers to success, and multidimensional programming were identified as central themes to this research. Although the participants reported differing experiences, their responses to this type of programming was overwhelmingly positive.