Date of Award

1-1-2011

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Department

Educational Administration and Policy Studies

First Advisor

Kent Seidel

Keywords

Early Childhood Education, English as a Second Language, English Language Acquisition, Linguistically Diverse, Preschool

Abstract

Linguistically diverse learners are a rapidly growing subpopulation of the students currently served by schools and future forecasts indicate that population growth is expected to continue. Students who enter school speaking a language other than English need adequate time and opportunity to English. Furthermore, children who attain grade-level literacy by the third grade demonstrate greater achievement in school and life. Because language and literacy acquisition in the early elementary years leads to later success and English language learners (ELLs) need time and opportunity to master both, it is imperative that school systems focus on interventions to ensure both early and long-term success for ELLs. Participation in high quality prekindergarten programming may be a viable avenue to contribute to successful outcomes for linguistically diverse children in schools by offering extra time and opportunity during a child's journey to English mastery. This nonexperimental ex post facto study examined whether ELLs who participated in the publicly funded Colorado Preschool Program (CPP) through their school district were more likely to achieve grade-level language and literacy proficiency as measured by the Colorado English Language Acquisition (CELA) standardized assessment while taking poverty into account. Previously collected data were obtained from a database maintained by a school district an upper-middle class, large school district in Colorado. The final study sample consisted of 118 ELL students who had complete data from the 2004-2005 school year through the 2009-2010 school year. Logistic regression results indicated that for each year a child participated in CPP, he or she was approximately two-and-a-half times more likely to demonstrate proficiency on the CELA test prior to the end of third grade (p<.05). Chi-square tests indicated that CPP participation and free and reduced lunch qualification were independent of one another. The findings of this study suggest that CPP may be a promising intervention to aid ELL students in achieving grade-level proficiency early in their educational careers.

Provenance

Recieved from ProQuest

Rights holder

Tara Szabo Maxson

File size

126 p.

File format

application/pdf

Language

en

Discipline

English as a second language, Early childhood education, Education policy

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