ERIC Number: ED411337
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
Alternative High School Scheduling. Student Achievement and Behavior. Research Report.
Pisapia, John; Westfall, Amy Lynn
In 1995 the Metropolitan Educational Research Consortium (MERC), Richmond (Virginia) commissioned a study of alternative high school scheduling modules to determine the effects of different schedules on teaching strategies, teacher and student satisfaction, and student and school performance. This report presents results of an analysis of student achievement and behavior data from 12 high schools, 3 inner city, 5 suburban, and 4 rural. Two traditional-day schedules and four variations of block scheduling were compared. Teachers and students in alternating and semester block schools reported that learning is not watered down, but that it is different, with more focus on concepts than facts, more depth, and more problem solving. Students in semester block schedules experienced greater increases in overall grade point average than those in alternating block schedules. In general, verbal scores rose more in schools that switched to an alternating or semester block schedule than mathematics. Increases in Scholastic Aptitude Test scores were greater for students in alternating block schedules than for students in semester block schools, but after the first year, students in four of the seven schools that switched to either type of block scheduling experienced increases in verbal scores. In two of four alternating block schools, student performance on advanced placement tests declined, as it did in the two semester block schools. Overall, attendance was not positively affected by the change, but in both alternating and semester block schools, students reported that school was "calmer" and teachers made fewer disciplinary referrals. (Contains 13 tables and 15 references.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Metropolitan Educational Research Consortium, Richmond, VA.