Institute for Academic Excellence, Report 8: The Heritage Middle School (Indiana)
This is a study of five grade 6 classes (125 students) taught by one teacher (Matthew Lind), who reported that he has been using AR for five years. Lind's report, however, is limited to one year, 1997-1998: The use of AR resulted in gains of 1.5 years, or 3.8 NCE points. This is an outstanding gain, and Lind shows that it was not limited to the better readers: In fact his 18 low readers (grade level 4.9 or less) gained 1.8 years.
Renaissance Report 17: Monroe County, Florida
AR was used in an entire district of 6000 students over one year
(1998-99). Renaissance claimed that
1. The lowest performing grade level improved from 56 to 65 on the SAT9 reading test. (Note that if the lowest performing group scored 56, this is a very high-performing district.)
2. The highest performing grade level improved from 70 to 72.
3. The number of students scoring below the district's proficiency level dropped from 596 to 480 students.
An inspection of FCAT scores for Monroe students only partly confirms this improvement. Fourth graders in 1998 scored 311, eighth graders 306. Fourth graders in 1999 also scored 311, but eighth graders rose sightly, to 315. (http://www.firn.edu/doe/sas/fcat/fcinfopg.htm)
Renaissance Report 36: Troy Howard (Maine)
At the Troy Howard Middle School, AR was done with two classes of sixth graders, a total of 76 students, over one year. One class improved from the 40th percentile on the STAR test (designed by Renaissance) to the 49th percentile, and the other improved from the 48th to the 50th percentile. Thus, one class gained a substantial amount and the other did not.
Renaissance Report 51: Highland Renaissance Academy (North Carolina)
The Highland Elementary school in Charlotte, North Carolina is so enthusiastic about Accelerated Reader and other Renaissance products that they have renamed their school the Highland Renaissance Academy. AR was introduced in 1998, along with 40 minutes of daily reading. In addition, students keep a daily "reading log."
The report presented data combining reading and math scores. The gains appear to be remarkable: In 1997, before AR was introduced, 36% of Highland students scored at or above grade level on the North Carolina "end-of-grade" math/reading test. This increased to 40% in 1998, 60% in 1999, 64% in 2000 and 75% in 2001. It should be noted that scores for the state of North Carolina as a whole also increased from 1998 to 2001, from 62% to 75% of students scoring above grade level (North Carolina, 2002).
From the Highland Elementary website, I obtained the scores for reading only, broken down by grade. Highland did not indicate how many students were at each grade. I also include the state of North Carolina figures (North Carolina, 2002, table 2), followed by the difference between the two (table 4).
Table 4: Percentage of students scoring at or above grade level: Highland/State/difference
From: Ren. Report 51