A mathematical programming approach to elementary school facility decisions

Nora E. Greenleaf, Terry P. Harrison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Beginning in the early 1970's, school districts throughout the United States were abruptly faced with a dramatic decline in enrollments. These declines required that many administrators adjust their planning procedures to include the effects of unused or under-used facilities. The most prominent of these decisions was the closing of selected schools. Most districts addressed this issue by establishing citizen task forces to analyze the current situation, to recommend how school facilities should be reorganized, and to develop the timing of these activities. These citizen task forces clearly operate in a political environment, and are necessarily concerned with qualitative social issues as well as those issues that are traditionally more quantifiable. In this paper we develop and investigate the use of quantitative tools that enhance this decision making process. Specifically, we discuss the development of a zero-one integer program designed to assist in facility allocation problems faced by many school districts. The paper includes a demonstration case study using this model with data from the State College, Pennsylvania school district.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)395-401
Number of pages7
JournalSocio-Economic Planning Sciences
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1987

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Strategy and Management
  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty
  • Management Science and Operations Research


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