Is Retention an Appropriate Reading Intervention?
"Retention is a commonly used reading intervention. Do you see retention as an appropriate intervention? Please explain the scientific evidence supporting retention as an intervention." - Doctoral Fellow, University of Florida
Reid Lyon Answers
Retention is hard to study experimentally because this is not a condition you can do randomized trials with - NOR WOULD YOU WANT TO!!!
program that has not been successful with a student will not become more
successful by trying this same program again.
Take a look
at the research on reading development published in the New England Journal
of Medicine and the Journal of the American Medical Association and Sally
Shaywitz' Longitudinal studies. These data will give you good background
on retention and the developmental lag issues.
we receive dozens of emails every week about retention.
Despite overwhelming evidence that retention does not work - and that
it damages children - many school districts continue to use this outmoded
Retention - Achievement and Mental Health Outcomes (National Association
of School Psychologists) 6th grade students rated grade retention as
the single most stressful life event, higher than the loss of a parent
or going blind. Retained students are less likely to receive a high
school diploma by age 20, receive poorer educational competence ratings,
and are less likely to be enrolled in any post-secondary education program.
Retained students receive lower educational and employment status ratings
and are paid less per hour at age 20.
Position Statement on Student Grade Retention and Social Promotion (National Association of School Psychologists) "Through many years of research, the practice of retaining children in grade has been shown to be ineffective in meeting the needs of children who are academically delayed."
Wrong Solutions (American Federation of Teachers) "Social promotion
and grade retention are mechanical responses to an educational problem.
The scandal is how little attention they give to preventing failure in
the first place."