Date of Award

Fall 10-6-2023

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership for Learning Dissertations


Educational Leadership

Committee Chair

Dr. Nicholas Clegorne

Committee Chair/First Advisor

Dr. Cindy Reed

Second Committee Member

Dr. Arvin Johnson


This study examines the lived experiences of elementary teachers in a rural school district in Northwest Georgia that shifted to a four-day student week, Tuesday-Friday, as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. When schools shut down due to COVID-19 in March 2020, it launched a new wave of educators walking out the door nationwide, further impacting an already existing problem of teacher shortages. Situated literature has traditionally pointed to a four-day student schedule due to budget cuts and financial gain. This study provides insight from teacher and school leader perceptions through interviews on how shifting to a modified calendar impacted their job satisfaction related to teacher retention. Mondays for teachers included engaging in professional learning communities, time to plan, collaborate with colleagues, and continue professional development. The findings revealed mixed outcomes connecting to time alleviated and time constraints. It also provided lessons learned through the calendar shift and suggestions to various stakeholders specifically relating to teacher retention.