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Samantha Castro Defends Doctoral Dissertation at CSE

December 4, 2017 – Samantha Castro of Wayne, N.J., has successfully defended her doctoral dissertation at the College of Saint Elizabeth to earn an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership.

The title of her dissertation is, "Improving Novice Teacher Retention in an Urban School District." Castro, who is currently the assistant principal at Newton High School, realized that retaining teachers in urban school districts is critical to cohesiveness, continuity and community within schools.

Castro's dissertation assesses what motivates teachers to remain in an urban school setting, what impacts their decision to depart and what support structures are necessary to increase teacher retention in urban settings.

When analyzing the data, Castro formulated several recommendations to improve retention including: addressing the need for administrative support to improve classroom management, supplying intentional and well-planned professional development as well as cultivating monthly new teacher induction workshops.

The results of this study hope to close the achievement gap between urban school districts and non-urban school districts.

Castro received a Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Delaware and earned a Master of Education in administration and supervision at Saint Peter's College.

The doctoral program at CSE, which is dedicated to preparing leaders who are committed to social justice and ethical practice, began in August 2007. Integrated into all course work and learning activities are the central values and beliefs necessary for school leaders to function as morally purposeful stewards for their school communities. This philosophy of servant leadership represents a major shift from the traditional paradigm of school leaders as managers of resources, which is so prevalent in today's practices.

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Founded in 1899 by the Sisters of Charity of Saint Elizabeth, the College of Saint Elizabeth has a strong tradition of concern for the poor, for developing leadership in a spirit of service and social responsibility, and a commitment to the promotion of women as full partners in society.

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