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ED 339 775 UD 028 443

AUTHOR LeBlanc, Linda A.; And Others
TITLE Unlocking Learning: Chapter 1 in Correctional

Farlilities. Final Report: National Study of the
Chapter 1 Neglected or Delinquent Program.

INSTITUTION Policy Studies Associates, Inc., Washington, DC.;
Research and Training Associates, Inc., Overland
Park, KS.; Westat, Inc., Rockville, MD.

SPONS AGENCY Department of Education, Washington, DC. Office of
the Under Secretary.

CONTRACT 300-87-0124
NOTE 106p.; For related documents, see UD 028 445-447.
PUB TYPE Reports - Research/Technical (143)

EDRS PRICE MF01/PC05 Plus Postage.
DESCRIPTORS Adult Education; *Compensatory Education;

*Correctional Education; *Delinquent Rehabilitation;
Dropouts; Educationally Disadvantaged; Individualized
ImAruction; *Institutionalized Persons; Mathematics
Education; *Program Effectiveness; Program
Evaluation; Reading instruction; *Secondary
Education; State Programs

IDENTIFIERS *Hawkins Stafford Act 1988

A 3-year study of the operation of Chapter 1

Neglected or Delinquent (Chapter 1 N or D) Program, which provides
compensatory education services to youths in state-operated juvenile
and adult correctional facilities, was conducted. The study found
that Chapter 1 N or D Program participants had the following
characteristics: (1) over half of the youth are high school dropouts;
(2) the highest grade completed was 3 years below the typical grade
completed by other youth of the same age; (3) participants generally
stay in the facility an average of more than 13 months; (4) most do
not enroll in school on release or they enroll and soon drop out; and
(5) the older the student, the less likely he or she is to enroll and
to persist in school. Instruction is commonly done on an
individualized diagnostic/prescriptive method with students working
on packets of materials or worksheets to meet individually diagnosed
deficiencies in basic skills. The most effective Chapter 1 N or D
Programs inc.uded the following parameters: (1) separate educational

administrations; (2) strong communication and administrative
leadership at the facility and state levels; (3) creative use of

funds; (4) a staff committed to correctional education; and (5)
coordination between Chapter 1 and L'zgular academic programs. Chapter
1 services also can include postrelease transitional and prerelease
services. The document also provides data on program administration
and administrator and educator roles. Included are 14 figures, 9
tables, and an appendix listing ef'ective and common practices.

Page 2





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Teachers use comprehensive assessments to determine placement and instructional

needs of individual students, referring to the results of tests given at entry and periodically during a

youth's confinement. Staff of juvenile facilities use a wider variety of tests focused on achievement

than do staff of adult facilities, whereas staff in adult facilities tend to use psychological, psycho-

educational or 1Q tests. Grade-equivalent scores are used as the primary criterion for program

placement and for assessment of progress. Reliance on such tests, generally administered at entry

to the correctional system, may lead to invalid initial assessments and subsequent invalid claims of

student progress.

Many programs and teachers have adopted assessment procedures pioneered by

special education such as the individual education plan (IEP). Almost all teachers report

developing IEPs containing specific performance objectives. One-third of Chapter 1 N or D

teachers review and update these to reflect progress at least weekly, and another third conduct

such reviews monthly. Regardless of type of facility, teachers seldom use more performance-based

measures (such as writing) to identify student needs and measure progress. Teachers who have

adopted more performance-based approaches monitor skills more closely akin to those required in

daily life outside the institution rather than "grade-level" expectations.

Almost all Chapter 1 N or D instruction is conducted using a highly individualized

approach. About 70 percent of Chapter 1 teachers in juvenile facilities and 90 percent of those in

adult facilities typically have students work on packets of materials or worksheets that have been

selected to match individually diagnosed skill deficiencies. Only half of the regullr education

program teachers reported such extensive use of individualized instruction; the others were equally

divided between using small-group or whole-class instruction. Fewer than half the teachers use life

skills materials, so named because of their immediate relevance to the noninstitutional needs of


Insufficient materials were reported by one-half of Chapter 1 N or D and regular

education teachers, and were reported more often by those in juvenile facilities than adult

facilities. However, only 4 percent reported that materials were so inadequate as to inhibit

learning. When asked to rank resources that are not available in sufficient quantity, teachers

ranked computers and computer software first. Chapter 1 N or D classrooms were generally

observed to be well stocked, but with largely outdate.' equipment and materials that had been

purchased at about the time the Chapter 1 N or D program was first introduced.


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Teachers report that they spent about 70 percent of their time in the Chapter 1 N or

D classroom in academic interaction, compared with 61 percent in regular classrooms. Classroom

observations found the remainder of time in both types of classrooms to be spent in nonacademic

tasks, activities, and conversation. Students put a high value on the time spent in personal and

social interaction with teachers, and teachers perceived such interaction as useful for building self-

esteem and mutual respect, which in turn, are believed to translate into favorable student
academic behavior.

Corrections education personnel endorse the highly individualized diagnostic/
prescriptive approach used for compensatory instruction because the Chapter 1 N or D and

regular classes contain students with widely varying achievement levels. The teachers believe that

the individualized approach contrasts favorably with the prior educational experiences of Chapter

1 N or D youth, where students were socially promoted or placed in classes regardless of reading

and math performance. The instructional methods observed in Chapter 1 classrooms, however,

are the same for all students; only the sequencing and curriculum components of the materials that

are assigned are different. Teachers were often observed to lack strategies for instructing youth

with various levels of ability without preprogrammed prescriptive packages. The lack of such

strategies was most evident for the youth who have only rudimentary skills.

One-half of Chapter 1 N or D teachers believe that the instructional techniques they

use are the major factors promoting learning in their classrooms. Techniques these teachers most

often cite as effective for promoting learning include having a small class size (13 percent), using a

variety of materials of different interest levels (12 percent), maintaining a supportive classroom

environment (9 percent), and being well organized for instruction (11 percent). Another 28

percent perceive their own attitudinal, interpersonal, and communication abilities as the major

source of effectiveness. Twenty-one percent identify student characteristics such as student

motivation to learn as the source of effective learning.


Page 105

Transitional Services

Support Services

Effective Practices

A variety of materials such as
newspapers, magazines, popu-
lar paperbacks, classics rewrit-
ten for lower reading ability
levels, vocational/trade mate-
rials and CAI are used with
students of all ability levels.

Where computers are avail-
able, technology is up-to-date
and allows the use of high-
quality software. Software is
available, and is aligned with
instructional objectives. CAI
provides ample opportunities
for writing, comprehension,
and problem-solving activities.

A variety of non-educational
services are provided as sup-
port for educational pro-
grams, including job readiness
and placement, life skills
training, alcohol and drug
abuse counseling, health edu-
cation, parenting, computer
literacy and driver's educa-

External resources such as
speakers, tutors, vocational
trainers, job training and
placement programs are uti-
lized to contribute to both
basic education and Chapter 1

Special funds are earmarked
for supportive services and
may include full or partial
funding by Chapter 1.


Common Practices

The myth that basic skill
instruction must precede
advanced instruction is well-
entrenched. Opportunities for
the development of advanced
skills are never provided.

Where computers are available,
computer technology is out-
dated; CAI software and/or
games lacking instructional
objectives are used for drill and
practice only.

Ancillary services are either
non-existent or limited to tradi-
tional services such as alcohol
or drug abuse counseling.

Factors such as geographic
isolation are seen by program
and facility administrators as a
deterrence from substantive
community, regional involve-
ment in the education program.

Funding for supportive services
receives low priority.

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ELe filLeinitticu Common Practices

Comprehensive libraries con-
taining a wide variety of
reference materials reflecting
the multi-cultural background
of students increase the use of
materials thereby enhancing
teacher efforts in compre-
hension while promoting self-

Inter-library loan programs
supplement in-house collec-

Fa& ies cooperate with
home schools through the
exchange of records and
aligning programs with origi-
nal programs. Credits earned
at the facility are transferable
to public schools. New
courses are added based on
input from teaching staff (e.g.,
life skills).


Libraries contain dated collec-
tions and reference materials.
Materials are limited and do
not reflect a variety of interests
or the multi-cultural back-
grounds of the student popula-

Libraries depend solely on in-
house collections for providing
reading materials for students.

Little or no communication or
exchange of information with
community schools occurs. The
institution's courses or the
offerings are not aligned with
the state's course requirements
for high school graduation.

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