Friday, May 10, 2013

Closure of public schools damages student outcomes

Contrary to what is stated to justify school closings, research shows that predicted cost savings often fail to materialize and students are damaged in significant ways.

Dallas ISD closed eleven schools for what amounts to a drop in the budget bucket. One year later the district has the largest fund balance in history.


"According to the Consortium for Chicago School Research, a leading research authority on education in Chicago, Arne Duncan's closure of dozens of schools as part of Renaissance 2010 provided no benefit to students, since the vast majority were simply transferred from one low-performing school to another. 

A recent brief on closures from CReATE notes actual damage - transferred students, who felt stigmatized, had lower test scores and higher risks of dropping out. The Consortium did find improved outcomes for the six percent who landed in academically strong schools and found supportive teachers, but that doesn't help the 94 percent who stagnated or lost ground, nor make up for the disruption to those children and families. It does not compensate for the spikes in violence when established gang routes were disrupted, nor for the inability of other schools to cope with repeated influxes of new, struggling students (some moved four times in just three years)."