Students at New York City’s small high schools earn higher test scores and are more likely to graduate in four years, according to a MDRC study. The analysis compared students who won a lottery for admission to a small high school with others who applied but lost the lottery.
The latest findings show that 67.9 percent of the students who entered small high schools in 2005 and 2006 graduated four years later, compared with 59.3 percent of the students who were not admitted and instead went to larger schools.
. . . This increase was almost entirely accounted for by a rise in Regents diplomas, which are considered more rigorous than a local diploma; 41.5 percent of the students at small schools received one, compared with 34.9 percent of students at other schools.
Small-school students earned higher scores on the English Regents exam, but there was no difference on the math Regents.
Here’s a link to the policy brief pdf).