Date of Award

Spring 5-18-2019

Degree Type


Degree Name

Executive Ed.D. in Education Leadership Management and Policy


Education Leadership, Management and Policy


Elaine Walker, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Michael Kuchar, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Deborah Harvest, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Jacqueline Young, Ed.D.


universal secondary education (USE), human capital, social capital, educational opportunities, gender outcomes, social norms


This dissertation research completed a secondary data analysis of international education data collected for Latin American and Caribbean countries. This study utilized a quantitative methodological approach which established correlative, frequency and factor sparsity (Pareto) illustrations. This project sought to understand how secondary education contributes to sustainable development in Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) countries. The Global Education Monitoring Report 2017 analyzed educational outcomes of second and third world countries and became the basis of this research. However, for this secondary data analysis research project, the researcher only focused on data specific to LAC countries. The following key areas of inquiry: (1) efforts by LAC to provide access to universal secondary education, (2) disparities in educational access based on gender, income and location, (3) in-school deterrents and social norms, (4) disparities in educational outcomes based on gender were used as a guide for this research project. The World Bank and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has identified four major areas of concern for LAC regarding educational outcomes: (1) a lack of public investment in universal education impacts achievement of education at all levels, (2) failure to invest in female students increases economic instability (3) gender bias in educational outcomes and (4) social norms and in-school deterrents and its effect on completion. This research found that sustainable development does have an impact on educational outcomes for male and female students at both the lower and secondary levels. Further, the wealth gap that exists between LAC countries significantly contributes to educational outcomes.