ERIC Number: ED334244
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Development and Utilization of a Fair Measure of Racial Integration: A Twelve-Year Quantitative Evaluation.
Roberts, Gary J.
Following implementation of a city-wide, court-ordered desegregation plan in the mid-1970's, a sociometric instrument was developed and administered in the Springfield (Massachusetts) Public Schools at both the upper and lower elementary school levels to analyze classroom social structure, provide feedback for teachers, and provide data for evaluating the extent of integration throughout the city. More than 3,000 students in grades 3 through 6 are tested yearly. A computer program designed to generate useful information for classroom teachers was subsequently developed and has been used extensively since 1978 at the classroom level as a diagnostic/prescriptive instrument and at the system level as a program evaluation tool. System-wide sociometric analyses over the past 12 years indicate that students in Springfield are making more friends across racial lines that was the case immediately following implementation of the desegregation plan. However, most classrooms and schools are far from optimal integration. Analysis of achievement and sociometric selections indicate the importance of achievement in student friendship selections. As along as ability grouping and the achievement gap between white and minority students persist, integration will be less than desired. The student survey instrument and a sociogram report for a practice schoolroom are appended. Ten tables, two graphs, and a 44-item list of references are included. (TJH)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Computer Software, Culture Fair Tests, Elementary Education, Elementary School Students, Friendship, Longitudinal Studies, Program Evaluation, Public Schools, Racial Integration, School Desegregation, Sociometric Techniques, Test Construction, Test Use, Urban Schools
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Springfield Public Schools MA
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Chicago, IL, April 3-7, 1991).