The term feeder patterns refers to the processes of transition between levels of schooling—for example, from elementary school to middle school and from middle school to high school. Catchment zones are the bounded geographical areas used to determine the distribution of students among schools—in the United States, neighborhoods serve as the most common geographic unit. Where and with whom students go to school is largely determined by these related structural characteristics. Student assignment and school composition are related to academic outcomes, such as achievement and attainment. The schools that students attend and the processes that link levels of schooling pertain to issues of educational equity. Students are differentially affected by feeder patterns. Catchment zones figure centrally in the way students are distributed among schools, but ...

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