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Grade Retention

Grade retention, a practice that involves students repeating the same curriculum because of failure to master the required skills, is a practice that has been considerably researched. Rarely does an academic field have such overwhelming evidence against a practice that is ignored, almost universally, in American schools. Grade retention is the exemplar of that phenomenon. Despite the research that, over decades, has been systematically analyzed and that suggests that grade retention is not an effective practice, children and adolescents are likely to continue to be affected by grade retention. As Shane Jimerson and his colleagues note, past syntheses are controversial because the original studies are typically based on pre- and posttest designs of retained students only and not on comparisons between retained and promoted but ...

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