Compelling new evidence that learning acceleration works, for all kids.
New research provides one of the first direct comparisons of remediation and learning acceleration, analyzing progress in math across 6,000 elementary classrooms over the 2020-21 school year.
The research findings
Students who experienced learning acceleration struggled less and learned more, completing 27% more grade-level math lessons than students who started at the same level but experienced remediation instead.
Learning acceleration was particularly effective for students of color and those from low-income families, completing 49% more grade-level lessons than those who experienced remediation.
Students from high-poverty schools were nearly 2x as likely to be remediated than their peers in low-poverty schools —even when they had already demonstrated success on grade-level math content.
The results are some of the first “empirical evidence at a massive scale” that acceleration produces different, and more promising, results than remediation, said Shalinee Sharma, Zearn’s CEO.
“It’s counterintuitive”: Teachers are trained that remediation — going back to unlearned material — is the way to make up academic losses. But a new TNTP and Zearn report using pandemic-era data suggests there’s a better way.
Students whose teachers began the 2020-21 school year teaching them grade-level content in math — going back to fill in content they had missed in the spring when needed — did better than similar students whose teachers started the year by teaching them the material they had missed from the previous grade.
Learning acceleration , defined
A "just-in-time” approach that connects unfinished learning into the context of new, grade-level learning.
In learning acceleration, a third grade teacher starts with third-grade math content, and builds in key second-grade concepts when students need them to access grade-level learning. Check out our on-demand webinar to see learning acceleration in practice.
Learn more about how Zearn can support learning acceleration in your school or district.