Small Schools Benefits Across the Cost Spectrum
One of most pervasive myths about education in America is that large schools are more cost effective than small schools. However, the ever-growing body of research indicates the opposite to be true in budgetary, community, democratic and societal senses —and they save lives.
Small schools offer financial benefits for the cost of education in America, but they also benefit communities in ways that go beyond per pupil spending. Small schools benefits for the cost of education in America transcend curricular boundaries by positively influencing the diverse communities they serve. Let’s take a detailed, contextual look at the small schools cost benefits….
The Budgetary Cost of Education in America
“The ‘cost savings’ of larger schools are only apparent if the results are ignored.”
—The New Rules Project
A longstanding, erroneous assumption is that schools can mimic the operational efficiency and effectiveness of corporations. In economy of scale thinking, corporate operating costs can potentially be streamlined through large-scale centralization. Educational consolidation, budgeting, hierarchies, policy-making, and the institutions (i.e. buildings) themselves were designed with the corporate model in mind.
By going small, the budgetary cost of education in America can remain stable in relation to the current large-scale institutional model. In some cases, going small can even lead to significant long-term cost savings for districts and governing bodies….
By reducing overhead and streamlining the budgetary cost of education in America while expanding personalization that treats students as unique individuals instead of identical products of standardized processes, we can meet individual student needs. You can learn more about the small school benefits for the cost of education in America (including impact on drop out and teacher retention rates) by reading these articles:
Articles and Research
- The Cost of Small Schools: A White Paper. Grauer, Stuart. The Small Schools Coalition and The Grauer School. 2019.
- Dollars and Sense: The Cost Effectiveness of Small Schools. Bingler, Steven; Diamond, Barbara M.; Hill, Bobbie; Hoffman, Jerry L.; Howley, Craig B.; Lawrence, Barbara Kent; Mitchell, Stacy; Rudolph, David; Washor, Elliot. 2002.
- Don’t Supersize Me: The Relationship of Construction Cost to School Enrollment in the U.S. Howley, Craig B. 2015.
- Effects of School Size: A Review of the Literature with Recommendations. Slate, John R. and Jones, Craig H. Essays in Education: Vol. 13: Iss. 1, Article 12. 2005.