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Charter Schools in New York City: Who Enrolls and How They Affect Their Students' Achievement

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  • Caroline M. Hoxby
  • Sonali Murarka

Abstract

We analyze all but a few of the 47 charter schools operating in New York City in 2005-06. The schools tend locate in disadvantaged neighborhoods and serve students who are substantially poorer than the average public school student in New York City. The schools also attract black applicants to an unusual degree, not only relative to New York City but also relative to the traditional public schools from which they draw. The vast majority of applicants are admitted in lotteries that the schools hold when oversubscribed, and the vast majority of the lotteries are balanced. By balanced, we mean that we cannot reject the hypothesis that there are no differences in the observable characteristics of lotteried-in and lotteried-out students. Using the lotteries to form an intention-to-treat variable, we instrument for actual enrollment and compute the charter schools' average treatment-on-the-treated effects on achievement. These are 0.09 standard deviations per year of treatment in math and 0.04 standard deviations per year in reading. We estimate correlations between charter schools' policies and their effects on achievement. The policy with the most notable and robust association is a long school year--as long as 220 days in the charter schools.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 14852.

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Date of creation: Apr 2009
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:14852

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  1. Ashenfelter, Orley & Card, David, 1985. "Using the Longitudinal Structure of Earnings to Estimate the Effect of Training Programs," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 67(4), pages 648-60, November.
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Cited by:
  1. Imberman, Scott A., 2011. "The effect of charter schools on achievement and behavior of public school students," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(7), pages 850-863.
  2. Torberg Falch & Justina AV Fischer, 2008. "Public sector decentralization and school performance: International evidence," Working Paper Series 9508, Department of Economics, Norwegian University of Science and Technology.
  3. Davis, Devora H. & Raymond, Margaret E., 2012. "Choices for studying choice: Assessing charter school effectiveness using two quasi-experimental methods," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 225-236.
  4. Roland G. Fryer, Jr, 2010. "Racial Inequality in the 21st Century: The Declining Significance of Discrimination," NBER Working Papers 16256, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Cortes, Kalena E. & Moussa, Wael S. & Weinstein, Jeffrey M., 2013. "Educating bright students in urban schools," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 286-297.
  6. Leonardo Bonilla Mejía & Luis Armando Galvis, 2012. "Profesionalización docente y calidad de la educación escolar en Colombia," ENSAYOS SOBRE POLÍTICA ECONÓMICA, BANCO DE LA REPÚBLICA - ESPE.
  7. Douglas O. Staiger & Jonah E. Rockoff, 2010. "Searching for Effective Teachers with Imperfect Information," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 24(3), pages 97-118, Summer.
  8. Carruthers, Celeste K., 2012. "New schools, new students, new teachers: Evaluating the effectiveness of charter schools," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 280-292.
  9. Justine S. Hastings & Christopher A. Neilson & Seth D. Zimmerman, 2012. "The Effect of School Choice on Intrinsic Motivation and Academic Outcomes," NBER Working Papers 18324, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Cortes, Kalena & Goodman, Joshua & Nomi, Takako, 2013. "Intensive Math Instruction and Educational Attainment: Long-Run Impacts of Double-Dose Algebra," Working Paper Series rwp13-009, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  11. David J. Deming & Justine S. Hastings & Thomas J. Kane & Douglas O. Staiger, 2011. "School Choice, School Quality and Postsecondary Attainment," NBER Working Papers 17438, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Elbert Dijkgraaf & Raymond Gradus & J. Jong, 2013. "Competition and educational quality: evidence from the Netherlands," Empirica, Springer, vol. 40(4), pages 607-634, November.
  13. Leme, Maria Carolina & Louzano, Paula & Ponczek, Vladimir & Souza, André Portela, 2012. "The impact of structured teaching methods on the quality of education in Brazil," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(5), pages 850-860.
  14. Roland G. Fryer, Jr, 2011. "Injecting Successful Charter School Strategies into Traditional Public Schools: A Field Experiment in Houston," NBER Working Papers 17494, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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