Thesis

An investigation of the effectiveness of a middle school math support program in the Escondido Union (K-8) School District

The purpose of this mixed method study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a middle school math support program. The Middle School Math Support Program (MSMSP) was developed by the Escondido Union (K-8) School District in California to address the low student achievement in mathematics. Students take a year-long elective math course in addition to their core math course. The MSMSP consists of two types of math support courses: Level I Skills for students that are more than 2 years behind grade level in math and Level2 Boosters for students that between 1-2 years behind grade level in math. Students were placed in the program based primarily on their proficiency levels (far below basic, below basic, basic, proficient, advanced) as determined by their performance on the California Standards Tests (CST's) for mathematics. Students that performed in the far below basic and the lower end of the below basic range were identified for Skills Level I math support course for their particular grade level 6-8. Students that performed in the upper end of the below basic range and the low of the basic range were placed in the Boosters Level2 math support course for their pmticular grade level 6-8. The hypothesis for the study was that MSMSP students' mathematics achievement would improve significantly according to several assessments. Students did improve significantly on the state assessments, but did not improve significantly on district assessments. The responses of the MSMSP teachers' survey were analyzed and most agreed that the program was beneficial and should continue to be suppmted by the district and school administrators but offered suggestions and recommendations to improve the program. during the same periods to allow for flexibility of student placement. KEYWORDS: Middle School Math; Math Support; Remediation; Standards-Based Refonn; Math Achievement; Math Instruction

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