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Teachers College, Columbia University
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Study Finds Big Gains For KIPP

Twenty-seven KIPP charter middle schools, including one in the District, have posted "large and significant gains" beyond what is average for urban schools, according to a report by the Educational Policy Institute. The Virginia Beach-based research organization said 1,800 mostly low-income black and Hispanic fifth-graders showed gains significantly above average in reading, language and mathematics from 2003 to 2004.

Statistical experts said more data on KIPP and more independent assessments are needed before any conclusions can be reached on the organization's methods. Jeffrey R. Henig, a professor of political science and education at Columbia University's Teachers College, said some scholars have suggested that KIPP fifth-graders arrive with more motivated parents and other advantages compared with their neighborhood peers. More research on whether the gains are sustainable over time also is needed, Henig added.

This article, written by Jay Mathews, appeared in the August 11th edition of the Washington Post.

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