ERIC Number: ED351191
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992
Reference Count: N/A
A Study of Tracking and Ability Grouping in Mathematics and Science Courses in Virginia's Secondary Schools. House Document No. 58. Report of the Department of Education to the Governor and the General Assembly of Virginia.
Virginia State Dept. of Education, Richmond.
This study was conducted to determine the status of tracking and ability grouping for mathematics and science courses in the public secondary schools of Virginia as required by the General Assembly of Virginia. Guided by Virginia's standards for accrediting public schools that deal with instructional programs, the study team sought to determine if the practice of tracking and ability could negatively influence a school's ability to fully implement the standard. After a review of the literature related to ability grouping and tracking, a Student Enrollment Survey form was developed to collect data regarding enrollment and offerings. Findings from the survey were reported in five sections. Findings revealed the following: (1) black students and low socioeconomic status (SES) students were unable to achieve the level of preparation necessary to attempt the advanced academic courses; (2) opportunities to enroll in advanced academic courses were limited; (3) students need access to advanced academic courses; (4) limited course offerings, particularly in the rural areas of the state, reduce the possibility of a larger number of students acquiring skills and abilities taught in advanced courses; and (5) tracking appears to have a negative influence on access and achievement for black and low SES students. Approaches are offered to increase enrollment of black and low SES students. Based on the findings, three recommendations to the Department of Education to increase course offerings and investigate tracking practices are presented. Appendices provide lists of courses offerings, contributing agencies, survey responses, Virginia School Divisions, course enrollments, distributions of mathematics and science courses, and the survey form. (Contains 44 references.) (MDH)
Descriptors: Ability Grouping, Academic Achievement, Enrollment, Equal Education, Grouping (Instructional Purposes), Low Income Groups, Mathematics Curriculum, Mathematics Education, Minority Groups, Racial Differences, Science Curriculum, Science Education, Secondary Education, Sex Differences, Socioeconomic Influences, Socioeconomic Status, Student Placement, Track System (Education)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Virginia State Dept. of Education, Richmond.
Note: Some appendixes have poor quality type.