This interesting report from ACT says that if students are not properly prepared by 8th grade they will likely have trouble in college. It emphasizes the importance of k-8 education and suggests the following:
• Focus K-8 (kindergarten through eighth grade) standards on the knowledge and skills that are essential for college and career readiness, and make these nonnegotiable for all students.
• Monitor student progress toward college and career readiness beginning in upper elementary school and continuing through middle school, and intervene with students who are not on target to becoming ready.
• Improve students' academic behaviors (homework compliance, attendance, and other aspects of academic discipline).
• Increase federal and state support for schools to implement intervention programs that help all students become ready for college and career.
Full report is available at http://www.act.org/research/policymakers/reports/ForgottenMiddle.html
This makes a lot of sense. Do you agree?