Archived InformationTried and True: September 1997--The information in this publication was current as of September 1997, and has not been updated since. Some services described in the publication may no longer be available.
An Early Elementary School Program for At-Risk Youth
|Developed and tested by Johns Hopkins University Center for Research on the Education of Students Placed at Risk (CRESPAR); adapted for students with limited English proficiency by WestEd|
Participating schools reorganize and coordinate all their resources to ensure that every child succeeds. Curriculum, classroom organization, and management and assessment are all focused to provide excellent early learning. In addition, the program stresses early intervention strategies such as one-to-one tutoring for students (especially first graders) who experience difficulty with reading, and working with parents and social agencies to address problems that interfere with students' success. Staff members learn to be relentless; their credo is never give up--try everything.
In that vein, WestEd has been adapting Success for All to more effectively serve students with limited English proficiency (Exito Para Todos). In tailoring the program to schools with large minority language populations, WestEd has included, for example, the use of bilingual reading materials, staff development sessions for bilingual education teachers and tutors, and training sessions for school staff working with family support teams.
Research has also found that compared to other Chapter 1 (Title I) schoolwide projects, Success for All reduces retention and assignments to special education while increasing attendance. Reduction in retention is an element of the program rather than an outcome; however, passing marginal students while providing them with additional academic support does seem to have promoted greater gains than were engendered by retaining the control students.
Evaluations in other Success for All schools, including those in California using Exito Para Todos, reiterate the Baltimore findings. First graders in Spanish bilingual programs scored at grade level and more than 6 months ahead of comparison students. Again, the benefits were greatest for students in the lowest 25 percent of their classes. Students with various language backgrounds who participated in a Success for All English-as-a-second-language program also outperformed their comparison counterparts.
As a Success for All regional training center, WestEd provides support to schools in the Southwest. During the 1995-96 school year, it provided training for 17 California elementary schools, 8 schools in Arizona, and, in cooperation with Johns Hopkins University, 7 schools in a special project in Houston, Texas. An additional 26 schools in those states and Utah began implementation with WestEd support in 1996-97.
A central element is the one-on-one tutoring for students having difficulty reading, especially in the early grades. Ideally, this tutoring is provided by certified teachers, but some schools are using teacher aides. Reading materials for Success for All schools are provided by the program developer. Every Child, Every School: Success for All, available from Corwin Press, describes both the Program and research outcomes.
Implementing Success for All requires awareness training, a vote for implementation by 80 percent of the staff, on-site staff development, follow-up site visits, technical assistance, and an annual conference for new and experienced sites.
In some localities, schools have been able to cover the cost of the additional staff and resources needed to implement Success for All by redirecting Title I, Title II, Title VI, and other categorical funds from pull-out and supplementary programs.
Costs associated with implementing this program vary, depending on the components of the program being used.