Implementation of Kentucky Nongraded Primary Program

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Abstract

We examine the development of the Kentucky nongraded primary program at the state level, and in six rural elementary schools from 1991 through 1998 (case studies of four of these schools are included in Appendix A). Data collected from our longitudinal qualitative study reveal that teachers changed their classrooms in response to the primary program mandate, and some positive outcomes occurred for students. Implementation was hampered, however, by rapid implementation timelines, failure to clearly articulate the purpose of the program and how it linked with a larger reform effort, and a firmly entrenched "graded" mindset. Currently, progress toward full implementation of a continuous progress model for primary students has stagnated. To revive the program, policymakers need to make program goals clear, demonstrate how its implementation will facilitate attainment of reform goals, and assist teachers in implementing the program as intended. (Note 1)

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How to Cite
Kannapel et al, P. J., Aagaard, L., Coe, P., & Reeves, C. A. (2000). Implementation of Kentucky Nongraded Primary Program. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 8, 34. https://doi.org/10.14507/epaa.v8n34.2000
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Author Biographies

Patricia J. Kannapel et al, AEL, Inc., Charleston, West Virginia (U.S.A.)

Patricia J. Kannapel, Research and Development Specialist for AEL, Inc. (Charleston, WV), has been co-director of AEL's ten-year study of the implementation of statewide reform four rural Kentucky school districts. She holds masters' degrees in education and anthropology from the University of Louisville and the University of Kentucky. Patty is currently a doctoral student in applied anthropology at the University of Kentucky.

Lola Aagaard, AEL, Inc., Charleston, West Virginia (U.S.A.)

Lola Aagaard was a researcher with AEL's study of the Kentucky Education Reform Act for eight years of its ten- year span. Her Ph.D. is in adult and community education (with an emphasis in research methods and data analysis) from the University of Oklahoma. Lola's eclectic academic history also includes degrees in nursing, biology, and public health.

Pamelia Coe, AEL, Inc., Charleston, West Virginia (U.S.A.)

Pamelia Coe has been principal investigator of AEL's ten- year study of the implementation of the Kentucky Education Reform Act. She obtained her masters' degree in cultural anthropology from Columbia University (NY) and her Ph.D. in foundations of education (specializing in anthropology of education) from Michigan State University. Prior to becoming involved in educational research, Pam worked in community development with the American Friends Service Committee, mostly with American Indian groups.

Cynthia A. Reeves, AEL, Inc., Charleston, West Virginia (U.S.A.)

Cynthia A. Reeves spent four years as a member of AEL's research team studying the implementation of statewide reform in four rural Kentucky school districts. She holds master's degrees in economic development and applied anthropology from the University of Kentucky. Cindy is currently working on her dissertation in applied anthropology at the University of Kentucky.