We investigated whether children’s reading and mathematics growth trajectories from kindergarten to fifth grade inter-related, and to what extent disability and minority status interacted to predict their achievement trajectories. We conducted secondary data analysis based on a nationally representative sample of 6,446 U.S. schoolchildren from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study–Kindergarten Cohort (ECLS-K). Results indicated that children’s reading and mathematics achievement were highly correlated in both initial status and growth. Being disabled or a racial/ethnic minority independently predicted lower academic achievement. However, and contrary to what might be expected from prior research on minority children’s special education experiences, disability status was associated with similar academic disadvantages for minority and White students from kindergarten to fifth grade. Growth mixture models identified a group of children with lower and lagging achievement in both reading and mathematics from kindergarten until fifth grade.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health