Panel Paper: Kindergarten Redshirting: Assessing Incidence and Impacts

Friday, November 9, 2012 : 9:00 AM
Salon B (Radisson Plaza Lord Baltimore Hotel)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

C. Kevin Fortner, Georgia State University and Jade Marcus, UNC-Chapel Hill

Recent studies have leveraged national and statewide data sets in Texas and California to determine the incidence and factors contributing to the incidence of kindergarten ‘redshirting’ (students enrolling in kindergarten a year later than expected based on state enrollment cutoffs).  Redshirting may not only effect a child’s own outcomes, but its aggregate impact may also have implications for school administration and funding, classroom management and peer learning experiences (Bassok & Reardon, 2010). Utilizing a statewide micro-level census data set covering data from the kindergarten through 3rd grade year in North Carolina, this study will examine the incidence of redshirting in the state, its effect on classroom age dispersion, and various outcomes. Outcomes examined include 3rd grade test scores in reading and math for redshirted students compared to similar students who do not redshirt , how redshirting changes the probability of being classified as a gifted or disabled student by the end of the 3rd grade, and how redshirting influences the arrangement of peers in classes in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grades. The data available also allow an examination of how current economic conditions influence the incidence of redshirting from the 2006-07 to the 2010-11 school year.
This paper's primary contribution is assessing the effects of redshirting on within-grade and within-classroom variation and on gifted and disability classifications early in a child’s academic career using recent statewide educational census data and multilevel modeling.  Additionally, this study contributes to the growing literature documenting the incidence of redshirting by using recent data.