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Does school choice increase school quality?

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Federal No Child Left Behind' legislation, which enables students of low-performing schools to exercise public school choice, exemplies a widespread belief that competing for students will spur public schools to higher achievement. We investigate how the introduction of school choice in North Carolina, via a dramatic increase in the number of charter schools across the state, affects the performance of traditional public schools on statewide tests. We find test score gains from competition that are robust to a variety of specifications. The introduction of charter school competition causes an approximate one percent increase in the score, which constitutes about one quarter of the average yearly growth.

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Paper provided by East Carolina University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 0106.

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Handle: RePEc:wop:eacaec:0106

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  1. Betts, Julian R, 2001. "The Impact of School Resources on Women's Earnings and Educational Attainment: Findings from the National Longitudinal Survey of Young Women," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 19(3), pages 635-57, July.
  2. Eric A. Hanushek, 1979. "Conceptual and Empirical Issues in the Estimation of Educational Production Functions," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 14(3), pages 351-388.
  3. Eric A. Hanushek & Steven G. Rivkin & Lori L. Taylor, 1996. "Aggregation and the Estimated Effects of School Resources," NBER Working Papers 5548, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Ai, Chunrong & Norton, Edward C., 2000. "Standard errors for the retransformation problem with heteroscedasticity," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 19(5), pages 697-718, September.
  5. David Card & Alan Krueger, 1990. "School Quality and Black/White Relative Earnings: A Direct Assessment," Working Papers, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section. 652, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  6. Caroline M. Hoxby, 2002. "School Choice and School Productivity (or Could School Choice be a Tide that Lifts All Boats?)," NBER Working Papers 8873, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Caroline Minter Hoxby, 1994. "Does Competition Among Public Schools Benefit Students and Taxpayers?," NBER Working Papers 4979, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Arellano, Manuel & Bond, Stephen, 1991. "Some Tests of Specification for Panel Data: Monte Carlo Evidence and an Application to Employment Equations," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 58(2), pages 277-97, April.
  9. Blair, John P. & Staley, Sam, 1995. "Quality competition and public schools: Further evidence," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 14(2), pages 193-198, June.
  10. George M. Holmes, . "The Effect of Charter School Competition on Traditional School Quality," Working Papers, East Carolina University, Department of Economics 0107, East Carolina University, Department of Economics.
  11. Taber, Christopher R., 2000. "Semiparametric identification and heterogeneity in discrete choice dynamic programming models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 96(2), pages 201-229, June.
  12. Caroline Hoxby, 2000. "Peer Effects in the Classroom: Learning from Gender and Race Variation," NBER Working Papers 7867, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Bettinger, Eric P., 2005. "The effect of charter schools on charter students and public schools," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 133-147, April.
  14. Harold Alderman & Peter F. Orazem & Elizabeth M. Paterno, 2001. "School Quality, School Cost, and the Public/Private School Choices of Low-Income Households in Pakistan," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 36(2), pages 304-326.
  15. Betts, Julian, 2000. "The Impact of School Resources on Women's Earnings and Educational Attainment: Findings from the National Longitudinal Survey of Young Women," University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series, Department of Economics, UC San Diego qt6nx050kp, Department of Economics, UC San Diego.
  16. Geske, Terry G. & Davis, Douglas R. & Hingle, Patricia L., 1997. "Charter Schools: A Viable Public School Choice Option?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 15-23, February.
  17. Joshua D. Angrist & Victor Lavy, 1999. "Using Maimonides' Rule To Estimate The Effect Of Class Size On Scholastic Achievement," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, MIT Press, vol. 114(2), pages 533-575, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Daniel Millimet; Vasudha Rangaprasad, 2004. "Strategic Competition Amongst Public Schools," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 197, Econometric Society.
  2. John Witte & David Weimer & Arnold Shober & Paul Schlomer, 2007. "The performance of charter schools in Wisconsin," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(3), pages 557-573.
  3. Marcelin Joanis, 2009. "Sharing the Blame? Local Electoral Accountability and Centralized School Finance in California," Cahiers de recherche, Departement d'Economique de la Faculte d'administration à l'Universite de Sherbrooke 09-21, Departement d'Economique de la Faculte d'administration à l'Universite de Sherbrooke.
  4. Scott Imberman, 2009. "The Effect of Charter Schools on Achievement and Behaviorof Public School Students," Working Papers, Department of Economics, University of Houston 2009-02, Department of Economics, University of Houston.
  5. Millimet, Daniel L. & Collier, Trevor, 2008. "Efficiency in public schools: Does competition matter?," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 145(1-2), pages 134-157, July.
  6. Jaag, Christian, 2006. "School Competition," MPRA Paper 339, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  7. Kaoru Nabeshima, 2003. "Raising the quality of secondary education in East Asia," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3140, The World Bank.
  8. Maria Ferreyra & Brett Gordon & Dennis Epple, 2011. "Charter School Entry in Market Equilibrium: The Case of Washington, DC," 2011 Meeting Papers 1266, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  9. Todd Nesbit & Joseph Palardy, 2007. "Traditional public schools versus charter schools: a comparison of technical efficiency," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 9(9), pages 1-10.
  10. Welsch, David M. & Zimmer, David M., 2012. "Do student migrations affect school performance? Evidence from Wisconsin's inter-district public school program," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 195-207.
  11. Gibbons, Steve & Machin, Stephen & Silva, Olmo, 2006. "Choice, Competition and Pupil Achievement," IZA Discussion Papers 2214, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Herrera Gómez, Marcos, 2006. "Efecto de la Competencia de la Educación Privada sobre la Calidad de la Educación Pública
    [Effect of Private Education Competition on the Quality of Public Education]
    ," MPRA Paper 30772, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  13. Winters, Marcus A., 2012. "Measuring the effect of charter schools on public school student achievement in an urban environment: Evidence from New York City," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 293-301.
  14. Ana I. Balsa & Alejandro Cid, 2012. "Impact Evaluation of a Privately Managed Tuition-Free Middle school in a Poor Neighborhood in Montevideo," Documentos de Trabajo/Working Papers 1202, Facultad de Ciencias Empresariales y Economia. Universidad de Montevideo..
  15. Robert Inman, 2005. "Financing Cities," NBER Working Papers 11203, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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