Creating small schools isn’t the first step to creating better schools, the Gates Foundation has concluded. From the Seattle Times:
The changes were often so divisive — and the academic results so mixed — that the Gates Foundation has stopped always pushing small as a first step in improving big high schools. Instead, it’s now also working directly on instruction, giving grants to improve math and science instruction, for example.
Most of the dozen-and-a-half Washington schools with so-called “conversion” grants have ended up only as hybrids — a mix of small-school elements added to big-school features.
Many good schools are small, but making schools small doesn’t make them good.