The Effects of Ninth Grade Small Learning Communities on At-Risk Students in Science and Mathematics
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The purpose of this research was to investigate the relationship of small learning communities with a ninth grade academy (SLCNGA) and student achievement of at-risk students over time on the science and mathematics Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) test in large suburban school districts. Research included data for school years 2003-2004 through 2009-2010 retrieved from the Texas Education Agency (TEA). This study used a Hierarchical Linear Model along with a cross-validation analysis to investigate, analyze, and examine the TAKS data in science and mathematics. Data from this study revealed an insignificant difference in science TAKS scores for students who attended an SLCNGA compared to those who did not attend a SLCNGA. However, it did find a statically significant difference in the covariates (Sex, at-risk, and ethnicity) used in the study. Data from this study also revealed a significant difference in mathematics TAKS scores for students who attended an SLCNGA compared to those who did not attend a SLCNGA. Furthermore, it did find a statically significant difference in the covariates (Sex, at-risk, and ethnicity) used in the study. Further investigation is needed to gain a better understanding of the relationship of SLCNGAs on additional covariates. Also, a mixed methods approach incorporating the implementation methods of SLCNGAs needs to be explored.