Sep 29, 2010


Success for
All is a comprehensive school- and home-based reading program with a
persistent focus on improving students’ reading skills. A team of
teachers, tutors, facilitators, advisors, and family work together to help
kindergarteners through sixth graders with their reading. The program
relies on incorporating reading skills into the school day, both in
reading classes and in other academic topics. The program can be adapted
to improve the reading outcomes of students who are not English-dominant.
An experimental evaluation of the program randomized schools to receive
Success for All or not. Hierarchical linear model analyses were conducted
on two overlapping samples: all students followed longitudinally for three
years from kindergarten through second grade; and all students enrolled in
second grade including children who moved in as well as those who were in
each school from the start of the study. Results were statistically
significant for both samples for all three literacy outcomes, specifically
word identification, word attack, and passage comprehension.


population: Students in grades K through 6

Success for
All is a reading program that can vary based on school needs and
resources; however, there are basic components that are constant in the
program. The program is based on reading teachers at every grade level,
from kindergarten through 6, reading to the children and discussing the
story to help students’ understanding, vocabulary, and knowledge of story
structure. Students have daily 90-minute reading periods and 20-minute
reading sessions outside of their reading or math periods. The main focus
of Success for All that is present in all schools is a focus on student
success, using evidence-based practices. Success for All is a
coordinated, proactive plan across a school to convert positive
expectations to positive results for every student.

kindergarteners and first graders, oral language and prereading skills are
emphasized within science or social studies topics. Story Telling and
Retelling (STaR) involves students listening to, retelling, and
dramatizing children’s literature. Phoenetic awareness is emphasized as

is used in the second semester of kindergarten or the beginning
of first grade to introduce phonetically regular minibooks. The minibooks
contain “shared stories” where parts of the story are read by the teacher
and other parts are read by the students. Repeated oral reading to
teachers and student partners is emphasized. Over time, the teacher-read
parts decrease and the student-read parts increase to the point where
students are reading the whole book. Spanish bilingual programs use an
adaptation named Lee Conmigo.

The next
reading level uses the Reading Wingsprogram. Reading Wings
uses student partner reading and discussion to increase vocabulary and
mastery of story content. The cooperative learning increases student
motivation, elaboration, summarization, and rephrasing. As homework,
students choose a book to read for 20 minutes each night. These home
readings are shared with the class through presentations and summaries
twice a week. Reading Wings can be used through sixth grade.

During the
20-minute reading sessions, students in kindergarten through third grade
are assembled into groups based on reading performance levels. Initial
group assessment is based on informal reading inventories given by
tutors. During this time, tutors and other staff teach the small groups.
Reading teachers assess the students’ progress at 8-week intervals in
order to determine need for regrouping, tutoring, or other types of

The tutors in
Success for All are certified teachers with Title I, reading, or special
education teaching experience. Well-qualified paraprofessionals tutor
children with less severe reading problems. These tutors can also assist
teachers during the 90-minute reading period. Tutoring is a priority for
first graders.

A family
support team within each school works to increase comfort and family
support for their child’s education. The support team is made up of a
parent liaison, vice principal, counselor, facilitator, and other
appropriate staff members in the school. Family visits and parenting
skills workshops can be arranged for the families. The family support
team also works with teachers and parents to solve behavior problems and
conflict in school and at home. The family support team also receives
referrals regarding students who are not making adequate progress.
Parents are encouraged and trained to participate in volunteer roles
within the school.

A program
facilitator works with the school principal to oversee the program and
help with scheduling, classroom visits, and teacher concerns. Teachers
receive manuals and three days of training that focuses on implementation
of the reading program. Presentations on classroom management, pacing,
and cooperative learning are made to the teachers throughout the year.
Program facilitators can organize informal sessions with teachers to share
problems, solutions, changes, and individual children.

An advisory
committee consisting of the principal, program facilitator, teacher
representatives, parent representatives, and family support staff holds
regular meetings to review program progress and discuss problems.

Because a
main goal of Success for All is to keep students with learning problems
out of special education programs and to not disrupt the regular classroom
experience for those students in special education, there is substantial
effort to deal with student learning problems within the regular
classroom. The tutors evaluate strengths and weaknesses and develop
strategies to teach students in the most effective way possible.

First year
costs for personnel, materials, and training are between $70,000 and
$270,000 per school in 2001 dollars.


Borman, G.
D., Slavin, R. E., Cheung, A., Chamberlain, A., Madden, N., & Chambers, B.
(2006). Final reading outcomes of the national randomized field trial of
Success for All. American Educational Research Journal, 44(3),

Thirty-five urban Midwestern and rural Southern elementary
schools participated in this study. Approximately 72 per cent of the
students participated in the federal free lunch program. Approximately 56
per cent of the sample was African American, 30 per cent was white
non-Hispanic, and 10 per cent was Hispanic.

Forty-one schools were randomly assigned, and 35 provided three years of
data. In the fall of 2001, an initial sample of six schools was given
$30,000 in exchange for participation in this study. Randomly assigned
Success for All intervention group schools (n = 3) used the money to
implement the program, and schools randomly assigned to the control group
(n = 3) were allowed to use the money in any way they saw fit, including
purchasing and implementing any innovation, except for Success for All.
To increase the sample of schools, a second sample of 35 schools was
recruited in the fall of 2002. One group of schools (n = 18) was randomly
assigned to receive the Success for All intervention in grades K-2 and no
intervention in grades 3-5 (these are the experimental group schools).
The other group of schools (n = 17) was randomly assigned to receive the
Success for All intervention in grades 3-5 and no intervention in grades
K-2 (these are the control group schools. Fidelity observations did not
indicate significant contamination of samples due to interventions taking
place within control group schools. Six schools, three from each random
assignment group, dropped out of the study before the third year analysis
was complete. Baseline analyses showed no significant differences between
experimental and control group schools on demographics or Peabody Picture
Vocabulary pretest scores.

At the
three-year post-test, students were assessed on the Woodcock Reading
Mastery Tests – Revised (WMTR), including the Word Identification, Word
Attack, and Passage Comprehension subtests. Thirty-seven per cent of the
sample was unavailable for year three post-test due to student relocation
or school closure. There was no significant difference among drop-outs
between groups. Students remaining in the sample had significantly higher
pretest scores than those dropping out. The authors suggest that based on
past quasi-experimental studies of Success for All, this significant
difference would likely result in downward biases of treatment impact

Results:At post-test, HLM analyses of 2,100 students in their schools all
three years found significant impacts on Word Attack, Word Identification,
and Passage Comprehension for experimental group students when compared
with control group students. Effect sizes ranged from 0.21 to 0.36 for
post-test Word Attack scores. Additional analyses of these students plus
students who moved into the school also found statistically significant
impacts on all three literacy outcomes.


Cost and
manual information are available at:

Success For
All Foundation, Inc.
200 W. Towsontown Boulevard
Baltimore, Maryland 21204-5200
1-800-548-4998 ext. 2372
410-324-4444 (Fax)


Borman, G.
D., Slavin, R. E., Cheung, A., Chamberlain, A., Madden, N., & Chambers, B.
(2006). Final reading outcomes of the national randomized field trial of
Success for All. American Educational Research Journal, 44(3),

Chambers, B.,
Abrami, P. C., Massue, F. M., & Morrison, S. (1997). The challenges of
implementing Success for All in a Canadian context
. Montreal, Quebec,
Canada: Centre for the Study of Classroom Processes.

Slavin, R.
E., & Madden, N. A. (1999). Effects of bilingual and English as a Second
Language adaptations of Success for All on the reading achievement of
students acquiring English. Journal of Education for Students Placed At
Risk, 4
(4), 393-416.

Slavin, R.
E., Madden, N. A., Dolan, L. J., Wasik, B. A., Ross, S., Smith, L., &
Dianda, M. (1996). Success for All: A Summary of Research. Journal of
Education for Students Placed At Risk, 1
(1), 41-76.

Children, Elementary, Co-ed, Urban, Rural, High-Risk, Tutoring,
Reading/Literacy, Cost information is available, Manual is available.

information last updated on 9/29/10.

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