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An estimation of technical efficiency for Florida public elementary schools

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  • Conroy, Stephen J.
  • Arguea, Nestor M.

Abstract

We use a frontier production function estimation technique to analyze whether elementary schools in Florida are operating at an efficient level and to explain any inefficiencies. A motivation for this analysis comes from recent state and federal level educational initiatives designed to improve school accountability and reduce class sizes. Results presented here indicate that while Florida elementary schools are not operating at efficient levels (with regional mean inefficiency estimates in the 4.1-5.1% range), they compare favorably to published results for other states. One factor associated with higher inefficiency is student promotion rates--something which does lie within the purview of school administrators and may have important policy implications. However, other factors associated with higher inefficiency (percent free-lunch eligible, higher crime and violence, higher suspension rates and not having a parent-teacher organization) are indicators of conditions that lie largely beyond the direct control of public schools, casting doubt on the effectiveness of recent accountability measures to improve efficiency.

Suggested Citation

  • Conroy, Stephen J. & Arguea, Nestor M., 2008. "An estimation of technical efficiency for Florida public elementary schools," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 27(6), pages 655-663, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:27:y:2008:i:6:p:655-663
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Kristof De Witte & Laura López-Torres, 2017. "Efficiency in education: a review of literature and a way forward," Journal of the Operational Research Society, Palgrave Macmillan;The OR Society, vol. 68(4), pages 339-363, April.
    2. Nghiem, Son & Nguyen, Ha & Connelly, Luke, 2014. "The Efficiency of Australian Schools: Evidence from the NAPLAN Data 2009-2011," MPRA Paper 56231, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Son Nghiem & Ha Trong Nguyen & Luke B. Connelly, 2016. "The Efficiency of Australian Schools: A Nationwide Analysis Using Gains in Test Scores of Students as Outputs," Economic Papers, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 35(3), pages 256-268, September.
    4. Haelermans, Carla & Ruggiero, John, 2013. "Estimating technical and allocative efficiency in the public sector: A nonparametric analysis of Dutch schools," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 227(1), pages 174-181.
    5. Ryan, Chris, 2013. "What is behind the decline in student achievement in Australia?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 226-239.
    6. Daniel J. Henderson & Léopold Simar & Le Wang, 2017. "The three s of public schools: irrelevant inputs, insufficient resources and inefficiency," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 49(12), pages 1164-1184, March.
    7. Ben Yahia, Fatma & Essid, Hédi & Rebai, Sonia, 2018. "Do dropout and environmental factors matter? A directional distance function assessment of tunisian education efficiency," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 60(C), pages 120-127.
    8. Gronberg, Timothy J. & Jansen, Dennis W. & Taylor, Lori L., 2012. "The relative efficiency of charter schools: A cost frontier approach," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 302-317.
    9. Shawna Grosskopf & Kathy Hayes & Lori Taylor & William Weber, 2015. "Centralized or decentralized control of school resources? A network model," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 43(2), pages 139-150, April.
    10. Brennan, Shae & Haelermans, Carla & Ruggiero, John, 2014. "Nonparametric estimation of education productivity incorporating nondiscretionary inputs with an application to Dutch schools," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 234(3), pages 809-818.
    11. López-Torres, Laura & Nicolini, Rosella & Prior, Diego, 2017. "Does strategic interaction affect demand for school places? A conditional efficiency approach," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(C), pages 89-103.

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