ERIC Number: ED239368
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983
Reference Count: 0
Setting the Standard: The Characteristics & Consequences of Alternative Student Promotional Policies.
Labaree, David F.
Examining student promotion standards in American education, the author reviews the origins and history of the shift between merit promotion (which advances students based on demonstrated skill competence) and social promotion (which advances students in response to their social needs). Case studies of promotional policies are provided for schools in Philadelphia, New York City, Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Chicago, and Milwaukee; analyses of their promotional standards are based on seven criteria. While the national movement toward raising student promotional standards is based on the assumption that there is a relation between promotion and performance, the author outlines how research evidence is inconclusive. Current empirical literature on the subject leaves only one conclusion: there is no valid evidence demonstrating that either promotion or retention has any significant impact on low achieving students. Nevertheless, the author provides suggestions for implementing higher standards in promotional policies. Concluding that there is an absence of evidence clearly defining one form of promotional policy as most effective, the author points out that the choices must be made on the basis of social values. (MD)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Educational History, Educational Research, Elementary Secondary Education, Flexible Progression, Grade Repetition, Social Promotion, Social Values, Student Placement, Student Promotion
Citizen's Committee on Public Education in Philadelphia, 311 South Juniper Street, Room 1006, Philadelphia, PA 19107 (single copies free; quantity requests by arrangement).
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Administrators; Practitioners
Sponsor: Samuel S. Fels Fund, Philadelphia, PA.; Philadelphia Foundation, PA.
Authoring Institution: Citizens Committee on Public Education in Philadelphia, PA.
Identifiers: Merit Promotion
Note: For the executive summary, see EA 016 328. Prepared for the Promotion Standards Committee.