ERIC Number: ED370210
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994-Apr-1
Effects of High School Restructuring and Size on Gains in Achievement and Engagement for Early Secondary School Students.
Lee, Valerie E.; Smith, Julia B.
School restructuring continues to be a common approach to improving education. Despite restructuring's continued and growing support, there is little research to support its effectiveness. The theoretical contrast exposed in school restructuring is between bureaucratic and organic organizational forms. A study assessed the effect of restructuring on students during their early high school years. Data were used from the first two waves of the National Educational Longitudinal Study of 1988 with a nationally representative sample of 11,794 high school sophomores in 820 secondary schools. Restructuring effects were evaluated on gains in students' engagement and achievement in mathematics, reading, social studies, and science between grades 8 and 10, as well as the social distribution of the gains. Schools were categorized as restructured, moderate, or traditional based on 30 structural practices measures. Restructured high schools and unrestructured schools were contrasted with traditionally reformed schools. High school size was an important structural feature. Results showed that students' achievement and engagement were significantly higher in restructured schools and lower in unrestructured schools. Achievement and engagement gains were also more equitably distributed in restructured schools. Smaller schools also had higher and more equitable engagement and achievement. (Contains 72 references.) (JPT)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Wisconsin Center for Education Research, Madison.; Center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools, Madison, WI.