WWC review of this study

The impact of supplemental educational services participation on student achievement: 2005-06.

Rickles, J. H., & Barnhart, M. K. (2007). Los Angeles, CA: Los Angeles Unified School District, Research and Evaluation Branch, Planning, Assessment and Research Division.

  • Quasi-Experimental Design
    , grades

Reviewed: September 2016

No statistically significant positive
Meets WWC standards with reservations
Academic achievement outcomes—Indeterminate effects found
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
Significant? Improvement

California Standards Test (CST): English

Supplemental education services vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
216,192 students




More Outcomes

California Standards Test (CST): Mathematics

Supplemental education services vs. Business as usual

0 Days

Full sample;
216,192 students





Evidence Tier rating based solely on this study. This intervention may achieve a higher tier when combined with the full body of evidence.

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.

  • Female: 49%
    Male: 51%
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    Not Hispanic or Latino    


This study included all students in the Los Angeles Unified School District who were eligible for Supplemental Educational Services (SES) during the 2005-2006 school year. There are 28 different SES service providers reported (e.g., Boys and Girls Club of America, Ace Tutoring Services, Kumon Math and Reading Centers). Services were provided on school campuses as well as at the service providers' locations. Services were offered before school, after school, during the summer, and on weekends; times of services varied according to service provider.

Study sample

The sample consisted of 18% in elementary school, 48% in middle school, and 34% in high school. Almost half (49%) were female, and the majority (85%) were Hispanic, with 9% African American, 3% Asian/Pacific Islander, 2% white, and 0.3% other. Eleven percent had disabilities and 7% were in the Gifted and Talented Education (GATE) program. The majority (88%) received free or reduced-price lunch.

Intervention Group

The intervention in this study was the Supplemental Educational Services (SES) program, which included free supplemental academic services offered to eligible students. These services were diverse in format, delivery, and content. Twenty-eight different service providers participated in this study, with services aimed at improving mathematics skills, English language arts skills, basic education skills, and social skills. Service locations varied as well, with some services offered at school sites and some offered at the service provider's location. SES were offered during non-school hours (e.g., before school, after school, weekends, and summers).

Comparison Group

The comparison condition for this review includes those students who were eligible for SES but chose not to apply. This represents a business-as-usual comparison.

Support for implementation

The authors report students' participation levels (low, medium, and high) but do not provide any other information about implementation. Of the 23,086 students who applied for SES, 14,759 attended an SES program.


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