EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – Recent study from University of Texas in Austin suggests children’s third grade ranking can determine how much they make when starting their career.

The study stated that students ranked in 25 percent of their class in third grade outperform students who have similar test scores, but ranked in bottom 25 percent at a different school.

The study was done on 3 million students throughout their academic year for 15 years and showed students in top 25 percent in third grade also did better in eight grade and high school.

Those students were also more likely to go to college and even earn $1500 more a year in at the beginning of their career.

Cindy Wiltshire, early childhood education assistant professor at UTEP said, while this outcome has something to do with student’s motivation it does not mean it is set in stone.

“We cannot take from this manuscript that because your child is ranked lower in third grade that it is set in stone that their outcome will be less so than the child that’s been ranked higher. There’s lots that happens before third grade and lots that happens after third grade that can affect those outcomes,” Wiltshire explained.

She said motivation plays an important role in student’s success and suggested the best way to encourage better performance is for parents and teachers to praise children’s hard work regardless of the test results.

“I would much rather praise a child for their hard work as opposed to one test score , it’s a snap shot in the life of a child,” she added.

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