Is there "white flight" into private schools? New evidence from High School and Beyond
In the U.S., white parents may choose to send their children to private schools in response to the local concentration of minority schoolchildren, commonly referred to as "white flight". This paper contributes to the existing literature by providing new evidence on white flight from the data set High School and Beyond (HSB). I find that a one-percentage-point increase in the county (metropolitan area, or MA) level minority share of school-age population increases the private schooling probability of white students by 0.2 (0.27) percentage points. White flight appears to be more sensitive to the concentration of black schoolchildren than to any other minority concentration. White families also appear to respond more strongly to the concentration of poor minorities than to non-poor minorities. Results also suggest substantial variation in the rate of white flight across different areas of the country. Finally, when minority shares are measured at the county level, there is some evidence of increasing rate of white flight from the local concentration of black schoolchildren as the black share increases.
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