REMEDIAL PROGRAMS


                        June 30, 2004

















Legislative Committee on Education

Nevada Education Reform Act (NERA)







The Legislative Committee on Education wishes to thank the people who have contributed to the compilation of this booklet. 


Several program vendors were extremely helpful in supplying staff with information on the programs that appear in the pages of this booklet.  In addition, the Committee thanks the staff of the Nevada Department of Education and Dr. George C. Hill, University of Nevada, Reno, for the information provided on the effectiveness of the programs. 




At the national and state levels, myriad efforts are in place that set high standards for student learning.  State policies have been set to challenge, support and monitor schools as they work to improve learning for all students.  Incentives for improvement and sanctions for continued low performance have been established.  At the same time, a number of remediation programs of instruction are beginning to demonstrate the ability to increase the academic achievement of students.  With the state standards movement maturing and with increasing numbers of remedial program developers showing both research bases and effectiveness data to support their products, it is hoped that low-performing schools will have the chance to improve and reach all students.


The Nevada Education Reform Act (NERA) of 1997 established a structure for the Legislature to view the public education system as a whole; established a statewide mission statement; formulated a series of goals; identified polices and programs that fostered improvement; and set the tone for reform and improvement.  With the passage of Senate Bill 1 of the 19th Special Session, the provisions of the federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 were incorporated into NERA.  The goals for improvement and consequences of failure to improve for schools were brought into greater focus.  Now, the stakes are higher for low-performing schools.  As a result, the focus of this book has changed slightly.  The programs contained herein have been examined for subject-area emphasis and alignment to Nevada content standards in greater detail than ever before. 


As a part of NERA, the Legislative Committee on Education is required to recommend to the Nevada Department of Education programs of remedial study that have proven to be successful in improving the academic achievement of pupils in the subject areas of reading, writing, mathematics and science.  The Legislative Bureau of Educational Accountability and Program Evaluation, with assistance from the Department of Education and other education specialists, developed this List of Effective Remedial Programs (LERP) and presented it to the Legislative Committee on Education in March 1998.  Updates to the LERP were presented to the Committee in January 1999, March 2000, January 2001, January 2003 and May 2004.  Upon approval of each List by the Committee, the following recommendations were made:


  1. The programs should undergo repeated evaluation to determine  their continued effectiveness on increasing academic achievement of low-performing students; and


  1. Additional programs should be reviewed for possible inclusion on the LERP.


This year staff again convened to review the entire list of 40 programs on the 2003 edition of the LERP.  Also, 36 new programs were submitted for review and possible inclusion.  Based upon the review, staff recommended that 8 programs be added to the LERP and of the 40 programs on the 2003 edition of the LERP, 36 be continued.  The Legislative Committee on Education approved staff’s recommendations as presented and added one additional program (Voyager Passport).  Therefore, the total number of programs on the 2004 edition of the LERP is 45. The Nevada Department of Education officially adopted the recommendations of the Committee on June 28, 2004.



Sources of Information


Since the LERP is now a well-established part of the education accountability system in Nevada and many program vendors and educational publishers contact staff directly to find out how to participate, research by legislative staff is limited.  The following resources were used by staff to obtain information on both new and existing programs:



Criteria for Selection


The following set of criteria was used to review the programs:


Intended Audience


Description of the Program







Alignment of Program to Nevada Content Standards


Evidence of Effectiveness


Requirements for Implementation





About the Entries in This Book


The following entries provide information about each remedial program.  This information is for school staff and district staff to use in deciding which program would be most helpful in targeting those students that need help improving achievement. 


Entries are divided into two categories: curriculum-oriented programs and skills development programs.  Curriculum-oriented programs teach concepts and facts and are geared toward giving students the skills and competencies needed to move ahead in school and succeed at assessments.  Skills development programs are not content‑focused or subject-specific; rather, these programs help students study more effectively, learn with more ease, or think critically.  It is important that schools choose the program(s) that will target those student populations achieving at the lowest level. 


Schools must also understand that proper program implementation is crucial for the success of a remedial program.  Program publishers design programs in a precise way, requiring specific equipment or a particular amount of time be devoted to the program.  Changing the vendor’s recommendation to suit a school’s preference may have a decided effect on whether the school obtains results from the program.  It is crucial that schools learn exactly what is required to completely and correctly implement a program before applying for NERA remediation grants.  Establishing relationships with education vendors prior to beginning the NERA application process helps to develop a common understanding between schools and vendors and can often avoid unforeseen problems.  


NOTE:  NERA grants require schools to implement a program according to the vendor or publisher’s instructions. 


For further information regarding the programs in this book, please call the Legislative Bureau of Educational Accountability (located in the Fiscal Analysis Division of the Legislative Counsel Bureau) at (775) 684-6821.  It is the intent of the Legislative Committee on Education that the LERP be reviewed and updated on a regular basis so that the content remains current with new technology in remedial education. 


This document may also be accessed at: www.leg.state.nv.usfiscal/lebeape.cfm