System 44: Jefferson County Public Schools

At a glance

  • Demonstrates a Rationale
  • Programs: System 44®, Read 180®
  • Subjects: Literacy Curriculum, Intervention Curriculum
  • Report Type: Efficacy Study
  • Grade Level: Middle, High
  • Region: West
  • District Urbanicity: Suburban
  • District Size: Large
  • Implementation Model: 80+ Minutes
  • District: Jefferson County Public Schools, CO
  • Participants: N=57
  • Outcome Measure: Reading Inventory
  • Evaluation Period: 2009–2010
  • Study Conducted by: Scholastic Research

Read 180 now incorporates the comprehensive foundational literacy skills scope and sequence from System 44.

Middle and high school students improve reading skills.

Jefferson County Public Schools (JEFFCO) is situated in Golden, Colorado, 15 miles west of Denver. It is the largest school district in Colorado, enrolling more than 84,000 students in Grades K–12. The district’s student body is 73% White, 20% Hispanic, 4% Asian/Pacific Islander, 2% African American, and 1% American Indian. Twenty-nine percent of students are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch and 9.3% of students are categorized as English learners.

In the fall of 2009, JEFFCO piloted System 44 with a small group of students in Grades 7–11. These 57 students were selected to participate based on a number of criteria, including scoring below 400 Lexile® (L) measures on the Reading Inventory® and exhibiting difficulty with word-reading skills on the Phonics Inventory®. Teachers integrated System 44 into a 90-minute existing READ 180® program. In all classes, students were expected to use the software for 20 minutes per day.

The Reading Inventory was administered to 57 System 44 students in the fall of 2009 and spring of 2010. Findings indicated that these students exhibited improvements in their reading comprehension skills. Overall, System 44 students advanced from 179L at pretest to 302L at posttest, a statistically significant average gain of 123L (Graph 1). Middle and high school System 44 students gained 151L and 33L, respectively.

As Graph 2 displays, further analysis showed that students who completed more than 50 topics on the System 44 software averaged higher gains on the Reading Inventory than those who completed fewer topics on the software (155L vs. 102L).

2 1 Jefferson County Graph 1

GRAPH 1. Jefferson County Public Schools System 44 Students, Grades 7–11 (N=57)

Performance on Reading Inventory by Grade Level, 2009–2010

Note. The gains in Lexile were statistically significant for all students (t=5.40, p=.00) and middle school students (t=6.08, p=.01). The high school sample was too small to test for significance.

2 1 Jefferson County Graph 2

GRAPH 2. Jefferson County Public Schools System 44 Students, Grades 7–11 (N=57)

Change in Reading Inventory Lexile Score as a Function of Software Usage, 2009–2010