Published Online: April 26, 2011
Published in Print: April 27, 2011, as Full-Day Kindergarten

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Full-Day Kindergarten

"The Effect of Attending Full-Day Kindergarten on English-Learner Students"

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English-language learners who attended full-day kindergarten in Los Angeles were much less likely to be retained before 2nd grade than those who went to half-day kindergarten in the same district, a new study has found.

It determined that ELLs who attended kindergarten full time were 5 percentage points less likely to be retained in those first few years than former half-day pupils.

However, the full-day program seemed to have less impact on children’s academic outcomes and their English fluency. The ELLs who had been in full-day kindergarten had higher reading scores in kindergarten than half-day pupils, but that edge had eroded by 1st grade.

The study drew on student-level data for seven cohorts of Los Angeles children entering kindergarten between 2001 and 2007—159,566 English-language learners in all. The findings were published online last month in the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.

Vol. 30, Issue 29, Page 4

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