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Closed schools

Question:
How many public schools in the United States have closed?

Response:

In 2019–20, there were 1,130 school closures, including 827 regular schools, 129 special education schools, 22 vocational schools, and 152 alternative schools.

Number and enrollment of public elementary and secondary schools that have closed, by school level, type, and charter status: 2010–11 through 2019–20
School level, type, and charter status 2010–11 2011–12 2012–13 2013–14 2014–15 2015–16 2016–17 2017–18 2018–19 2019–20
Total, all schools 1,741 1,692 1,394 1,644 1,336 1,070 1,068 1,310 1,122 1,130
School type
Regular 1,352 1,274 986 1,124 974 823 709 889 876 827
Special education 72 81 82 87 61 30 66 217 42 129
Vocational 6 12 68 18 23 14 9 13 24 22
Alternative1 311 325 258 415 278 203 284 191 180 152
School level and type
Prekindergarten 53 50 33 47 27 22 31 74 59 76
Regular 45 43 28 39 23 19 24 58 55 63
Special education 6 6 5 5 3 3 7 14 4 13
Vocational 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Alternative1 2 1 0 3 1 0 0 2 0 0
Elementary 759 725 587 601 482 450 390 492 410 457
Regular 727 698 561 554 449 422 352 400 394 438
Special education 12 9 12 18 16 6 12 79 7 13
Vocational 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Alternative1 20 18 13 28 17 22 26 13 9 6
Middle 261 277 185 240 248 192 184 217 194 175
Regular 232 236 158 212 229 174 155 179 177 155
Special education 1 3 1 9 3 3 5 24 3 7
Vocational 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 3 0
Alternative1 28 38 25 19 15 15 24 14 11 13
Secondary and high 428 458 443 497 437 317 343 387 315 244
Regular 204 223 180 211 213 167 130 199 162 117
Special education 26 20 28 20 14 11 11 53 12 20
Vocational 5 11 64 6 21 11 7 9 17 10
Alternative1 193 204 171 260 189 128 195 126 124 97
Other, ungraded, and not applicable/not reported 240 182 146 259 142 89 120 140 144 178
Regular 144 74 59 108 60 41 48 53 88 54
Special education 27 43 36 35 25 7 31 47 16 76
Vocational 1 1 2 11 1 3 2 4 4 12
Alternative1 68 64 49 105 56 38 39 36 36 36
All charter schools2 157 185 153 232 206 236 181 247 215 235
Prior year enrollment of schools that have closed
Total, enrollment 321,246 300,764 240,704 269,615 211,472 194,653 185,714 266,777 231,206 214,278

1 Includes schools that provide nontraditional education, address needs of students that typically cannot be met in regular schools, serve as adjuncts to regular schools, or fall outside the categories of regular, special education, or vocational education.
2 Charter schools are also included under the school level and type categories, as appropriate.
NOTE: Data in this table represent the 50 states and the District of Columbia. This table indicates the school year by which the school no longer operated (it closed between that school year and the prior school year). The closure of a school does not necessarily mean that a building is no longer used for educational purposes. A single school may share a building with another school, or one school may be housed in several buildings. Some data have been revised from previously published figures.

SOURCE: National Center for Education Statistics. (forthcoming). Table 216.95. Number and enrollment of public elementary and secondary schools that have closed, by school level, type, and charter status: 2010–11 through 2019–20 [Data table]. In Digest of education statistics. U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences.

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