School closure is relatively common in the United States. An analysis by the Urban Institute found that about 2% of public schools, on average, were closed each year between 2003 and 2013, and these closures were found in urban, suburban, and rural communities. A substantial number of public schools have been closed in Michigan, California, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Urban school systems that have closed several schools include New York City, Washington D.C., Chicago, Detroit, and Baltimore.What constitutes an "ineffective" school? What can schools do when students don't pull their own weight? As I have so many times, I put much of the responsibility for student performance on the students and families. I have students only 1 hour per day--I can do a lot, but I don't have any control over the 17 hrs per day my students are out of school.
In many cases, schools are closed in response to declining populations or other factors that led to a substantial decline in available resources. In other cases, school boards and elected officials struggle with the decision of what to do with persistently ineffective schools. Should they supply such schools with additional resources and attention to spur improvements? Or is it better simply to close schools where students consistently underperform and to enroll them in others?
This paper argues that, based on the available research, closing persistently ineffective schools can be a promising strategy for improving the educational outcome of the students who attend them.
I grant that my job as a teacher is more than just transmitting knowledge. It's part motivational, part inspirational. But only part. My students are the arbiters of their own destinies, they decide how much time and effort they will put into class. I can lead the horses to water, but....
I'll read the linked paper when I have time. I'm curious what the authors' methodology and evidence are.