Volume 44 - Number 2 - 2003 | DOI: 10.5032/jae.2003.02086
The objective of the study was to identify the major problems facing high school agriculture teachers in retaining students for secondary agricultural education programs as identified by agriculture teachers. To accomplish this objective the Delphi technique of obtaining group consensus was employed. The study used a series of four mailed questionnaires. The first round of the study used a questionnaire with an open-ended question. In the second questionnaire, respondents were asked to rate the items identified in round one on a five-point Likert-type scale. In the third round panel members were asked to indicate whether they agreed or disagreed with the statements from round two, and to provide comments if they could not agree with the summary findings. The fourth and final round produced concensus on ten of the statements from round three. The major problems identified by the Delphi technique in the successful retention of students in high school agricultural education programs were: scheduling difficulties, lack of guidance counselor support, the image of agriculture, increased graduation requirements, scheduling barriers created by college entrance requirements, competition from other school activities, block scheduling, the image of the local agriculture program, and the quality of the local agriculture instructor.