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The K-8 Advantage

Research shows that through full participation in a K-8 program, students become stronger academically, happier personally and more confident as leaders. Your investment in Monte Cassino's  K-8 educational model is an investment that compunds over time.

According to a new study published by American Educational Research Journal, sixth-eighth graders are bullied less, don't fight as much and do better in school when they attend K-8 schools than when they attend traditional 6-8 middle schools or 6-12 schools. They also tend to feel safer and more like they belong in K-8 schools, which researchers have attributed to their "top dog" status (versus the "bottom dog" status they hold in other school structures). 

According to NPR, the "top dog/bottom dog" theory makes a whole lot of sense. This study analyzed 90,000 students in more than 500 New York City schools over a three year period. Researchers analyzed a wealth of data including information pulled directly from the students themselves via annual surveys. This type of research was able to more definitively rule out other potential influences on a child's middle school experience. 

For example, the researchers found that even those who transferred to a K-8 school after starting somewhere else had a better experience than those who started (and stayed) in a 6-8 school, so they ruled out being "new" to a school as a cuase for student distress.

They also researched height and weight and were able to rule out that being taller and more able to "blend in" with older kids does not positively affect a student's experience as a "bottom dog". 

There will always be a "bottom dog" in any school situation, but the three years that make up a traditional middle school are already the toughest years for growing boys and girls. Making educated decisions to help your child work through these years can help them adjust through high school as well as into college.