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Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Despite New Zealand's reputation in literacy instruction, a major achievement gap has been identified for minority Maori and Pacific Islands children in poor schools. An intervention through professional development of teachers modified instructional practices in beginning literacy instruction. The intervention involved 72 teachers from 12 schools who focused on children in the 1st 6 months of schools. A mixed longitudinal and cross-sectional design was used to examine the effects of the intervention on the language and literacy of 344 children across the age range of 5.0-6.0 years. The children in these schools made accelerated progress and gained higher levels of achievement across a broad band of measures compared with matched cohort groups. It is possible to raise achievement for minority children in schools serving low socioeconomic communities to near national levels.