Fifth Grade Teacher Kadie Parsley Earns Doctorate in Education

Lower School’s Kadie Parsley completes three-year study on best practices in teaching boys.
Congratulations to Fifth Grade Teacher Kadie Parsley who recently earned her doctorate degree in education from Virginia Tech! Parsley successfully defended her dissertation and will graduate in May 2021. 

Parsley’s three-year study focused on examining effective practices in instructing boys. Building on global research, she narrowed the focus of her work to a group of eight all-boys, independent schools in Virginia and surveyed their instructional methods and levels of teacher preparation. She then collected the responses, examined the data and identified recurrent themes. 

The data confirmed that activities such as movement and games, along with strong student/teacher relationships, were important components of teaching boys, but the survey responses did reveal a need for a more defined, shared vocabulary in all-boy school settings. “From what I could see, we have a common language, but we don’t have a common practice when it comes to that language,” said Parsley. 

Parsley, who joined St. Christopher’s School in 2012, hopes that her work will help her and her colleagues continue to refine their classroom practices. She has a passion for teaching boys and pursued a relevant topic. “At the start of the process, one of the best pieces of advice I was given was to do something you’re passionate about. Don’t try to fit yourself into the study, let the study fit into you.” 
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