Additional schools recommended for closing — by one account, as many as 10 more — will be announced on Friday.
The 15 schools targeted for closing or downsizing are ones at which a large majority of the students are not proficient in English or math, according to their scores on state exams. The average graduation rate of the high schools was 49.5 percent. Most of the schools would be phased out, losing students and financing with each passing year.
Among them is Jane Addams High School for Academic Careers, the troubled South Bronx school under investigation by the city over accusations that it gave students credits for classes they never took.
Another school on the closing list is Public School 14, the first Staten Island school the city has sought to shut since 2002, when Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg gained control of the system.
The closings need the approval of the Panel for Educational Policy, to which a majority of the members are appointed by the mayor, essentially ensuring that the department’s proposals will be adopted.
“These are never easy decisions, but when a school has failed to serve its students well year after year, even after receiving additional supports, we have a responsibility to provide students with better options,” Chancellor Dennis M. Walcott said. “We are already hard at work creating the great new schools that these communities deserve.”
The announcement came as little surprise, since the Education Department had announced in the fall the names of 47 struggling schools it was considering for closing. It began the process of shutting 26 schools last year and has closed 117 schools since 2002, many of them large high schools in impoverished neighborhoods in the Bronx and in Brooklyn, where students are often years behind academically.
The city would not reveal the complete list of schools it planned to close, withholding some names to be announced on Friday. But Ernest A. Logan, president of the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators, predicted that the total would be 25. Education Department officials declined to comment.
Mr. Logan, widely thought to be a supporter or tempered critic of the city’s policies, said that after 10 years of school closings, he was angry about city officials’ assertions that schools opened under the mayor were performing better than older ones. Of the 15 proposed closings that have been announced, 7 opened under Mr. Bloomberg.
“You can’t keep saying that the ones you opened are better if they’re the ones you’re closing.” he said.
In a statement sent to reporters, unusual for its sharp tone, Mr. Logan said that the city’s attempts to help faltering schools were “weak or nonexistent” and that the Bloomberg administration had “an inferiority complex about their own ability to come up with solutions.”
Since 2007, the city’s annual report cards on each school have played a central role in determining which will be closed, though officials also look at enrollment patterns and safety issues, among other factors. Three of the schools on the list serve elementary students, three of them are middle schools and five are high schools. Three of the schools are for grades 6 to 12, and one is kindergarten through eighth grade.
Unlike most of the schools on the list, the Academy of Business and Community Development, a 6th-through-12th-grade school in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, would be shut down at the end of the school year rather than phased out under the city’s proposal.
City education officials said the school was so small — there are 44 sixth graders and 36 seventh graders — that closing it over several years would leave it with too few students and too little financing to function.
Known as A.B.C.D., the school was opened in 2005 to serve students who have the lowest odds of graduating from high school: young black and Latino men. Its intentions mirrored those of the mayor’s new initiative to aid young minority men, but the results were less than hoped for. Last year, only 19 percent of the students at the school scored as proficient on the state reading exam.
Students leaving the school on Thursday said the small all-boys school made them feel close, like brothers, but not always. As students departed, several older boys began punching and shoving younger ones, telling them not to speak to a reporter and reducing some to tears.
Eternal Southerand, 13, an eighth grader, said, “We had a lot of substitutes last year, especially over summer school, and they were always texting or whatever; they didn’t give us the help we needed.”
Another school on the city’s list is P.S. 161, a school in Crown Heights serving kindergarten through eighth grade. It was known a decade ago for its success with low-income students. But that era is over, and last year most of the school’s students did not score as proficient in English or math. The city plans to phase out its middle school grades, sending parents on a hunt for new schools for their children.
Demetrius Lawrence, president of the school’s parent teacher association, said he was already thinking about where to send his fourth-grade daughter. Her older sister, a sixth grader, would be in the last class of P.S. 161’s middle school, where he plans for her to stay.
Hadas Goshen contributed reporting.