Assessing Student Needs: Remediate or Promote?

Colissa R. BrogdenBlog, Reflect Better

TL;DR:

  • There are a number of reasons why parents may consider remediation for their child.
  • Recently, the governor of Kentucky signed a “redo bill” into law that would allow students to repeat this past year’s grade level if the student’s school district permits.
  • As you assess student needs, be sure to consider both the consequences and benefits of remediation.

The concept of remediation is not new. The reasons parents choose to keep their child in a current grade range from:

  • Allowing their academically developed child who is yet socially immature to stabilize.
  • The student struggled considerably in the areas of reading and math.
  • Other parents want their student athletes to continue to develop their skills.
  • Parents also consider how well their child will acclimate to a higher-grade level and increased academic expectations of success.

Recently, the governor of Kentucky signed a “redo bill” into law that would allow students to repeat this past year’s grade level if the student’s school district permits. This upcoming school year, parents should weigh the pros and cons of allowing their student to repeat this current year and make informed decisions that will benefit the student.

This upcoming school year, parents should weigh the pros and cons of allowing their student to repeat this current year and make informed decisions that will benefit the student. Click To Tweet

Assessing Student Needs: Consequences and Benefits of Remediation

To begin with, there have been many consequences as well as benefits of learning during the pandemic. One, because it was not safe to physically return to the traditional classroom, educators saw a widening of the achievement gap and the digital divide. This was prominent particularly in districts that have struggled for years to reach all children.

Additionally, students who needed intervention and other supports (special needs students and English Language Learners, as well as students of color) were among the highest groups of students who lost more than three and five months of learning in reading and math.

Finally, the interruptions to the learning environment and conventional routine have impacted students’ emotional well-being. Parents and students fear that if forced to continue to the next grade level, these gaps and divides will continue to increase.

Nevertheless, research shows that countless students found success in virtual and blended learning environments.  These students were motivated to excel in spite of this year’s challenges because of the changes in academic delivery. Students became more independent and developed critical thinking and problem-solving skills. More importantly, students thrived with the opportunity to “be in their own space” and engage in their learning.

Assessing Student Needs: Be More Informed

Parents should consider the following when deciding if their child will benefit from repeating the current grade level:

  • Consider remediation if it will promote achievement and social skills.
  • Determine what subjects/area(s) the child struggles with the most. If it is only one or two areas, maybe finding supplemental support in just those areas would be more advantageous.
  • Decide if “doing over” the current grade will include changes in instruction to promote academic progress.
  • Be realistic about expectations if the student is promoted or retained.

In making the decision to retain or promote a student, parents must make knowledgeable choices. Parents should contemplate the pros and cons and have practical expectations of success.


About Colissa R. Brogden

Colissa R. Brogden is in her 20th year as an English Language Arts Educator. Currently, she teaches ELA 11th and 12th at Great Oaks Career Campuses in Cincinnati, Ohio. She is a former Adjunct at the University of Cincinnati. She has a Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction and enjoys sharing best practices with other educators. Teaching and learning is her passion. She is dedicated to teaching and empowering her students with the skills to be exceptional individuals!