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Competitive Effects of Means-Tested School Vouchers

Listed author(s):
  • David Figlio
  • Cassandra M. D. Hart

We use the introduction of a means-tested voucher program in Florida to examine whether increased competitive pressure on public schools affects students' test scores. We find greater score improvements in the wake of the program introduction for students attending schools that faced more competitive private school markets prior to the policy announcement, especially those that faced the greatest financial incentives to retain students. These effects suggest modest benefits for public school students from increased competition. The effects are consistent across several geocoded measures of competition and isolate competitive effects from changes in student composition or resource levels in public schools.

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/app.6.1.133
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Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Journal: Applied Economics.

Volume (Year): 6 (2014)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 133-156

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aejapp:v:6:y:2014:i:1:p:133-56
Note: DOI: 10.1257/app.6.1.133
Contact details of provider: Web page: https://www.aeaweb.org/aej-applied
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  1. Damon Clark, 2009. "The Performance and Competitive Effects of School Autonomy," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 117(4), pages 745-783, 08.
  2. Rajashri Chakrabarti, 2013. "Vouchers, Public School Response, And The Role Of Incentives: Evidence From Florida," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 51(1), pages 500-526, 01.
  3. repec:mpr:mprres:6364 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. Julie Berry Cullen & Brian A Jacob & Steven Levitt, 2006. "The Effect of School Choice on Participants: Evidence from Randomized Lotteries," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(5), pages 1191-1230, 09.
  5. Böhlmark, Anders & Lindahl, Mikael, 2008. "Does School Privatization Improve Educational Achievement? Evidence from Sweden's Voucher Reform," IZA Discussion Papers 3691, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Joseph G. Altonji & Todd E. Elder & Christopher R. Taber, 2005. "Selection on Observed and Unobserved Variables: Assessing the Effectiveness of Catholic Schools," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 151-184, February.
  7. Hanley Chiang, "undated". "How Accountability Pressure on Failing Schools Affects Student Achievement," Mathematica Policy Research Reports c58a3b537e324447b94a2bd41, Mathematica Policy Research.
  8. Couch, Jim F & Shughart, William F, II & Williams, Al L, 1993. "Private School Enrollment and Public School Performance," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 76(4), pages 301-312, August.
  9. 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.
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