There has been on-going research throughout the years on the advantages of a K-8 education–the most recent reported by NPR was on a landmark study–one of the largest of its kind that supports the K-8 education model. The following articles provide insight on the topic:
Sixth Grade Is Tough; It Helps To Be ‘Top Dog’ (Published in: American Educational Research Journal – Social and Institutional Analysis, September 15, 2016).
What the Research Says (or Doesn’t Say) About K-8 Versus Middle School Grade Configurations (Published in: Education Northwest, August 11, 2011)
This growing body of research identifies the benefits of K-8 schools for middle school students, including a comprehensive new study. When compared to the traditional middle school model of grades 6-8, research shows that adolescent students (ages 12-14) who attend K-8 schools perform at higher levels than their traditional middle school peers, with both the academic and social/emotional needs of students better met at K-8 schools. Research shows that students who attend K-8 schools:
- Experience higher levels of self esteem
- Feel safer, with less discipline and behavior problems threatening their education
- Have a positive attitude toward school
- Have higher levels of academic achievement
- Experience more core instructional time, allowing for greater exploration and integration, rather than a focus on strictly content, departmentalization, and adherence to a rigid schedule
- Have significantly higher scores in reading, language arts, and mathematics
- Do not experience loss of achievement because of disruptive transitions
- Experience better outcomes in 9th grade
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