New York City’s small high schools had an average graduation rate of 79 percent in 2006, 21 percentage points higher than the rate of the district’s average high school, according to a report by WestEd, a nonprofit research, development, and service organization based in San Francisco.
Funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the report also found that the small schools had higher attendance rates, and that an average of 81 percent of their students applied to college. The study surveyed 14 of the 197 new, smaller high schools created in 2002 under the New Schools Initiative in response to the 1.1 million-student district’s low graduation rates. The initiative is partly funded by the Gates Foundation.
A version of this article appeared in the February 07, 2007 edition of Education Week