Classroom Concentration of English Learners and Their Reading Growth

Michael J. Kieffer, Andrew W. Weaver

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this brief, we use a nationally representative sample of ever-English learners (ELs; N = 783) to examine relations between EL concentration within classrooms and reading growth between kindergarten and Grade 5. Piecewise growth models were used to estimate relations for four developmental periods (K–1, Grades 1–2, Grades 2–3, and Grades 3–5). Results indicate nonsignificant, trivially sized relations for classroom EL concentration across periods, with and without controls for school concentration and student characteristics. Results were robust across multiple specifications. Findings call into doubt the academic benefits of the common practice of grouping ELs together in particular classrooms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)54-58
Number of pages5
JournalEducational Researcher
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2024


  • ability grouping
  • bilingual/bicultural
  • desegregation
  • longitudinal studies
  • mainstreaming
  • reading
  • secondary data analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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