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ERIC Number: ED361163
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992
Pages: 21
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Small Is Beautiful.
Rogers, Bethany
This paper presents research findings and the testimony of educators, students, and researchers demonstrating that small schools meet the essential conditions for providing high-quality education to all students. These essential conditions are: (1) students are known well by their teachers; (2) students are actively engaged in learning and in school activities; and (3) the school provides a secure and caring environment. When kids belong and are engaged, they are "available" to learn. In addition, students who belong to a school community are far less likely to commit acts of vandalism or assault, are truant less often, and are less apathetic than students in large depersonalized schools. This becomes especially important in light of the growing number of alienated at-risk youth from dysfunctional families. Small schools have been criticized for their limited course offerings, but these very limits can lead to a focused coherent academic program that develops deeper understanding, connections across knowledge areas, and critical thinking skills. The community aspects of the small school, together with the need for academic coherence and interdisciplinary connections foster collegiality among teachers. While common sense and recent research clearly favor the small school environment, we remain wedded to powerful images of the comprehensive high school, spawned during the very different social and educational conditions of the 1950s. Moving beyond this nostalgic vision of "high school" may be the hardest step in educational improvement. (SV)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A