Can a mixed-method literacy intervention improve the reading achievement of low-performing elementary school students in an after-school program? Results from a randomized controlled trial of READ 180 Enterprise

Abstract:

This article describes an independent evaluation of the READ 180 Enterprise intervention designed by Scholastic, Inc. Despite widespread use of the program with upper elementary through high school students, there is limited empirical evidence to support its effectiveness. In this randomized controlled trial involving 312 students enrolled in an after-school program, we generated intention-to-treat (ITT) and treatment-on-the-treated (TOT) estimates of the program’s impact on several literacy outcomes of fourth, fifth, and sixth graders reading below proficiency on a state assessment at baseline. READ 180 Enterprise students outperformed control group students on vocabulary (d = .23) and reading comprehension (d = .32), but not on spelling and oral reading fluency. We interpret the findings in light of the theory of instruction underpinning the READ 180 Enterprise intervention.

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