The effects of school mobility in pre -assessment grade levels on student performance and school accountability in urban Title I schools

Susan Trauschke McEachin, Florida International University


This study examined the effects of student mobility and educational enrollment experiences on academic achievement. The educational progress, school enrollments and transfers of inner-city elementary students were tracked over a four-year period. Student achievement was measured by criterion-referenced reading tests administered in the second semester of the third grade. It further analyzed the degree to which the switch to different basal reading textbooks interrupted the continuity of education thereby contributing to the detrimental effects of intra-district mobility. Mobility histories of 2,913 third grade students were collected to evaluate the number of times each student entered or withdrew from a Miami-Dade County Public School beginning in August 2000 through March 2004, and distinguished between transfers that occurred during the academic school year and those that occurred during summer months. Data were analyzed using Pearson correlations and multiple regressions to determine if school mobility contributed to performance on the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Third Grade Reading Test (FCAT). Transferring from one school to another was found to have a significant negative impact on student test scores. Transfers within the academic school year were more detrimental than transfers that occurred during the summer months. Third grade students who transferred into schools that used the same reading textbook series were found to have significantly higher FCAT reading scores than third graders who transferred into schools that used different reading textbooks. The effects of mobility rates on overall school performance were also examined. Data was collected on 124 Title I elementary schools to determine the degree to which mobility affected school accountability scores. Title I schools with high student mobility rates had significantly lower accountability scores than schools with lower student mobility rates. The results of this study highlight the impact of education and housing policy and imply a need for programs and practices that promote stability in the early elementary years.

Subject Area

School administration|Elementary education

Recommended Citation

McEachin, Susan Trauschke, "The effects of school mobility in pre -assessment grade levels on student performance and school accountability in urban Title I schools" (2005). ProQuest ETD Collection for FIU. AAI3190963.