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ERIC Number: ED402677
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996-Mar
Pages: 20
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Education's Equivalent of Medicine's Framingham Heart Study.
Achilles, C. M.; And Others
Since 1984, large-scale, longitudinal, and experimental research on class size has been conducted in Tennessee. Project STAR (Student-Teacher Achievement Ratio) changed in 1989 to the Lasting Benefits Study (LBS) and Project Challenge. In 1985 almost 7,000 students in kindergarten were randomly assigned to either small classes, regular-sized classes, or regular-sized classes with a full-time aide. This paper summarizes the project's research findings to date. Findings indicate that small is better, especially in the early years of schooling. The program resulted in improved academic performance, improved cognitive scores on measures, fewer grade retentions, more on-task time for teachers, a higher level of student engagement, and a reduced test-score gap between white and nonwhite students. The paper also compares STAR to the Framingham (Massachusetts) Heart Disease Epidemiology Study. It describes how the program can ameliorate the effects of poverty and other factors that place children at risk. The achievement gap between black and white students does not open at grade 1 if both groups are placed together in small kindergarten classes by random assignment. Small classes beginning in kindergarten or first grade seem to prevent later school problems; however, later application of small-class treatment appears to have limited value. Seven tables are included. (Contains 13 references.) (LMI)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Tennessee