Social Promotion

Social promotion is the practice of promoting a student (usually a general education student, rather than a special education student) to the next grade despite their poor grades in order to keep them with social peers. In Canada and the United States, this practice is only used in the elementary and middle school level. Advocates of social promotion argue that this is done so as not to harm the students' self-esteem, to keep students together by age (together with their age cohort), and to allow teachers to get rid of problem students. The alternative to social promotion is a policy of grade retention, where students repeat a grade when they are judged to be a low performer. The aim of retention is to help the student learn and sharpen skills such as organization, management, study skills, literacy and academic which are very important before entering middle school, high school, college and the workforce.