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When children struggle in school, the topic of retaining a student can emerge. The emphasis on proficiency standards has resulted in a closer eye on children who may be under-performing. Over the years, differing views on “social promotion” and “holding students back” have been discussed and supported. Much research has been done on this topic and research is an important partner to opinions that people hold. Making a decision to promote or retain is very significant and can have ramifications for years. This packet of information highlights some of the key issues, as well as information on assessment which should guide decisions. Alternatives to retention are also noted. We have included Frequently Asked Questions on Promotion and Retention from the California Department of Education which has additional information available on their website at www.cde.ca.gov/re/lr/pr/faqppr.asp
The National Association of School Psychologists has available on their website (www.nasponline.org) a number of helpful articles on this subject.