"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Third Graders Face Retention in 13 States for Failing a Test

In 2000, Louisiana became the first state in the Nation to require elementary school children (4th graders), to pass a test to move on to 5th grade.  Since then hundreds of thousands of poor children have learned failure at an early age, with many of them now entering the "correctional" system of Louisiana, which is a major employer in the state.

Research shows that failing a grade is as traumatic to 3rd graders as losing a parent, but with the help of Jeb Bush's team and the lawyers from ALEC, we now have this bare-knuckled legislation to mandate 3rd grade retention in 13 states, as reported in this story at WaPo by Lyndsey Layton.

Where are the pediatricians, the child psychologists, the educational researchers who publish their important research and these horror stories in arcane journals that no one reads?  Where is the conscience of academics and the unions, who are bound by ethical code to protect children from miseducation and harm?

Here is a short list of research from Shane Jimerson's page at UC Santa Barbera.  Does anyone care about this travesty?

Synthesis of Retention Research - CSP 2001

Meta Analysis of Retention Research - SPR 2001

Characteristics & Consequences - JSP 1997

Dropout & Retention - PITS 2002

On the Failure of Failure - JSP 1999

Retention and Dropout - CSP 2002

Exploring Successful Failures - PITS 2001

Beyond Grade Retention and Social Promotion - PITS 2006


  1. It is called educational malpractice. One problem ..... our corrupt political and legal system makes billions off of a failing system. Why is the private school sector not in reform? Perhaps it is because almost all law and policy makers and their children attend or have attended private schools. Like the Great and Powerful Oz until there is exposure public education only serve as a money maker for the wealthy

  2. Bad news. A deeper review is a must for these students.

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