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Working paper

Differences in School Effectiveness Between Resilient and Struggling Russian Schools

Mikhailova A., Zvyagintsev R., Pinskaya М., Anderson L.
Our research is dedicated to identifying what allows schools operating in difficult social conditions to show good academic results. We answer this question through the conjugation of two theoretical frameworks: academic resilience and school effectiveness. We analyze several models of school effectiveness and compare resilient and struggling schools through them. The study uses a quantitative and qualitative mixed-methods design. Our main arguments are based on an analysis of interviews conducted with students, parents, teachers, and principals in different schools—3 resilient and 3 struggling. We conclude that the schools differ in the strategies they implement; the main problem facing struggling schools is not the lack of effective elements, but the presence of negative ones; in further studies of school effectiveness, it would be worth using an integrative model that combines both poles.