Schools that pay attention to transition and have an intentional transition plan see more success in increasing achievement and reducing retentions. Having an effective transition program contributes to developing a positive learning environment. Both sending and receiving schools need to work collaboratively with each other, and with families to provide ongoing support for students as they experience the transition to the middle grades.
“It is during the middle grades that students either launch toward achievement and attainment, or slide off track toward a direction of frustration, failure, and ultimately early exit from the only secure path to adult success.” (Balfanz, R. 2007)
For the purposes of this toolkit, parents and/or families means natural, adoptive or foster parents; close relatives; legal or educational guardians; and/or community or agency advocates.