The small schools movement is known by a number of different names, including small learning communities and schools-within-schools. In spite of the numerous names, the central point is to reduce the size of large, comprehensive high schools and purposefully reorganize them based on sound curriculum and the delivery of services intended to meet the social needs of students. Many large, comprehensive high schools serve as many as 1,500 to 5,000 or more students in large urban districts. These schools are designed to offer literally hundreds of different student activities, a full slate of coursework (e.g., remedial or advanced placement), and building facilities appropriate for school- and community-based functions. In spite of this intent, for a number of students, “large” became synonymous with “uncaring,” leading to ...

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