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School responsiveness to quality ranking: An empirical analysis of secondary education in the Netherlands

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  • Pierre Koning

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Abstract

As from 1997, the national newspaper Trouw has published quality scores of secondary schools in every year, using information of the schools inspectorate on, amongst other things, the average grades at the final examinations and the throughput of pupils in lower forms. How do schools respond to the publication of the rankings? We contribute to the literature in two respects. First, the current analysis is the first to address the impact of quality scores that have been published by a newspaper (Trouw), rather than public interventions that aim to track and improve failing schools. Second, our research design exploits the substantial lags in the registration and publication of the Trouw scores and takes into account all possible outcomes of the ratings, instead of the lowest category only. Overall, we find evidence that school quality performance does respond to the Trouw quality scores. Both average grades increase and the number of diplomas go up after receiving a negative score. These responses cannot be attributed to gaming activities of the school board, as an improvement is also observed in the gaming-proof quality indicators. For schools that receive the most negative ranking, the short-term effects (one year after a change in the ranking of schools) of quality transparency on final exam grades equal 10% to 30% of a standard deviation compared to the average of this variable. The long-run effects are roughly equal to the short-term effects.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis in its series CPB Discussion Paper with number 149.

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Date of creation: May 2010
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Handle: RePEc:cpb:discus:149

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References

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  1. Eric A. Hanushek & Margaret E. Raymond, 2004. "Does School Accountability Lead to Improved Student Performance?," NBER Working Papers 10591, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Justine S. Hastings & Jeffrey M. Weinstein, 2008. "Information, School Choice, and Academic Achievement: Evidence from Two Experiments," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 123(4), pages 1373-1414, November.
  3. Cecilia E. Rouse & Jane Hannaway & Dan Goldhaber & David Figlio, 2007. "Feeling the Florida Heat? How Low-Performing Schools Respond to Voucher and Accountability Pressure," Working Papers 1033, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Center for Economic Policy Studies..
  4. Craig, Steven G. & Imberman, Scott A. & Perdue, Adam, 2013. "Does it pay to get an A? School resource allocations in response to accountability ratings," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 30-42.
  5. Koning, Pierre & van der Wiel, Karen, 2010. "Ranking the Schools: How Quality Information Affects School Choice in the Netherlands," IZA Discussion Papers 4984, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Richard Blundell & Mónica Costa Dias, 2008. "Alternative Approaches to Evaluation in Empirical Microeconomics," CEF.UP Working Papers 0805, Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Economia do Porto.
  7. David N. Figlio & Cecilia Rouse, 2005. "Do Accountability and Voucher Threats Improve Low-Performing Schools?," NBER Working Papers 11597, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Jonah E. Rockoff & Lesley J. Turner, 2008. "Short Run Impacts of Accountability on School Quality," NBER Working Papers 14564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Julie Berry Cullen & Randall Reback, 2006. "Tinkering Toward Accolades: School Gaming Under a Performance Accountability System," NBER Working Papers 12286, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Eric A. Hanushek & Margaret E. Raymond, 2004. "The Effect of School Accountability Systems on the Level and Distribution of Student Achievement," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 2(2-3), pages 406-415, 04/05.
  11. Elbert Dijkgraaf & Raymond H.J.M. Gradus & Matthijs de Jong, 2009. "Competition and Educational Quality: Evidence from The Netherlands," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 09-100/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  12. Chiang, Hanley, 2009. "How accountability pressure on failing schools affects student achievement," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(9-10), pages 1045-1057, October.
  13. Thomas Dee & Brian Jacob, 2009. "The Impact of No Child Left Behind on Student Achievement," NBER Working Papers 15531, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Pope, Devin G., 2009. "Reacting to rankings: Evidence from "America's Best Hospitals"," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(6), pages 1154-1165, December.
  15. David N. Figlio & Maurice E. Lucas, 2004. "What's in a Grade? School Report Cards and the Housing Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 591-604, June.
  16. David N. Figlio & Lawrence S. Getzler, 2002. "Accountability , Ability and Disability: Gaming the System," NBER Working Papers 9307, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Marigee Bacolod & John DiNardo & Mireille Jacobson, 2009. "Beyond Incentives: Do Schools use Accountability Rewards Productively?," NBER Working Papers 14775, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Hanley Chiang, 2009. "How Accountability Pressure on Failing Schools Affects Student Achievement," Mathematica Policy Research Reports 6364, Mathematica Policy Research.
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Blog mentions

As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
  1. Publish school rankings, and bad schools improve
    by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2010-06-24 14:01:00
  2. School Report Cards Work
    by Alex Tabarrok in Marginal Revolution on 2011-02-26 12:01:00
  3. School Report Cards Work
    by Alex Tabarrok in Cafe Hayek on 2011-02-26 12:01:00
Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
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Cited by:
  1. Pierre Koning & Karen van der Wiel, 2010. "Ranking the schools: How quality information affects school choice in the Netherlands," CPB Discussion Paper 150, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis.
  2. De Witte, Kristof & Geys, Benny & Solondz, Catharina, 2012. "Public expenditures, educational outcomes and grade inflation: Theory and evidence from a policy intervention in the Netherlands," Discussion Papers, Research Professorship & Project "The Future of Fiscal Federalism" SP II 2012-111, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  3. Camargo, Braz & Camelo, Rafael & Firpo, Sergio & Ponczek, Vladimir, 2014. "Information, Market Incentives, and Student Performance," IZA Discussion Papers 7941, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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