The negative effects of school closings

It’s been three or four years since a huge wave of mass school closings swept across the urban areas of the United States, and the results are pretty conclusive: the school closings did not improve academic outcomes for students, did not save significant amounts of money, probably caused mental and emotional harm to many children, disrupted neighborhoods, and may be a major factor in the rise in violence in Chicago and elsewhere. And yet school districts like Indianapolis are still considering implementing this failed, dangerous strategy.

PAA took a position against mass school closings in 2013 (updated here).

Now we have prepared a set of materials detailing the problems and dangers of multiple school closings based on research and experience of the past few years of this unhealthy experiment.

1) Parents Across America position paper: Why Parents Across America opposes mass school closings (Updated 9/17) School closings9-17

2) PAA Background material on the negative effects of mass school closings (9/17) schoolclosingspacket

3) CReATE Research Brief on School Closures, Chicagoland Researchers and Advocates for Transformative Education March 2013 CReATE Research Brief #5 School Closures March 2013-1

4) Issue Brief: School Closings Policy, PACER/Research for Action March 2013

5) School Closings in Chicago, Executive Summary and Interpretive Summary, Consortium on Chicago School Research, 2015

6) “How School Closures Can Hurt Students in Disrupting Urban Educational Communities,” Vontrese R. Deeds, Scholars Strategy Network, 2014

7) “Minimal cost savings for closing schools: analysis,” Sarah Karp, Chicago Reporter, October 31, 2012

8) Summary of experts’ concerns about the mental and emotional effects of school closings on students, press conference presentation by Parents United for Responsible Education, May 2013.closingexpertsstatement5-21-13

Statements and research from experts at PURE 3/2013 press conference:

9) “Are Charter schools the answer — or one reason for – Chicago’s violence?” Julie Woestehoff, Huffington Post, September 2012

10) “The violent legacy of Chicago’s Mass School Closings,” Julie Woestehoff, blog post on

The violent legacy of Chicago’s mass school closings






Posted on by Julie Woestehoff Posted in Misc

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