ERIC Number: ED401088
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996-Dec
Reference Count: N/A
Affective and Social Benefits of Small-Scale Schooling. ERIC Digest.
This digest summarizes research in the affective and social realms that overwhelmingly affirms the superiority of small schools. Findings on the affective and social effects of school size are extensive and highly consistent, while the research base on outcomes of schools-within-a-school arrangements is smaller and less conclusive. While many small schools are also rural, it is the smallness of schools, regardless of setting, that is beneficial to students. Research on feelings and attitudes indicates the superiority of small schools in the following areas: student attitudes toward school in general and particular subjects, personal and academic self-concepts of students, student sense of belonging, social bonding between teachers and students, teacher and administrator attitudes toward work and each other, and cooperation among colleagues. Research on social behavior shows that compared to large schools, small schools have higher student rates of extracurricular participation, higher attendance rates, lower dropout rates, and fewer behavior and discipline problems. Small schools' superior performance may be related to the need for everyone's involvement, better interpersonal relationships, and easier management of individualized and cooperative practices. Economically disadvantaged and minority students benefit most from small schools, but are frequently concentrated in large schools in large districts. Schools-within-a-school plans have potential for producing results like those of small schools provided they are distinct administrative entities within the buildings that house them. Contains 13 references. (SV)
Descriptors: Collegiality, Educational Benefits, Educational Environment, Educational Research, Elementary Secondary Education, House Plan, School Holding Power, School Size, Small Schools, Social Behavior, Student Attitudes, Student Behavior, Student Participation, Teacher Attitudes
ERIC/CRESS, P.O. Box 1348, Charleston, WV 25325-1348 (free).
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Rural Education and Small Schools, Charleston, WV.