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On reconstructing school segregation: The efficacy and equity of single-sex schooling

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  • Billger, Sherrilyn M.

Abstract

A change to Title IX has spurred new single-sex public schooling in the US. Until recently, nearly all gender-segregated schools were private, and comprehensive data for public school comparisons are not yet available. To investigate the effects of single-sex education, I focus on within private sector comparisons, and additionally address selection bias using an index comparing expectations to outcomes and quantile regressions. Compared to graduates from private coed schools, girls' school alumnae are no more likely to pursue college degrees, and both genders are less likely to meet their own educational expectations. However, single-sex schooling may support gender equity, as single-sex schools yield the least segregated college major choices. On the other hand, higher mean starting salaries among single-sex school graduates do not persistent in regression results. Much of the benefit from single-sex schooling accrues to students already likely to succeed, but selection bias does not explain all gains. There are some benefits for African-American men and low income students.

Suggested Citation

  • Billger, Sherrilyn M., 2009. "On reconstructing school segregation: The efficacy and equity of single-sex schooling," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 393-402, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:28:y:2009:i:3:p:393-402
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. 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.
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    3. Sander, William & Krautmann, Anthony C, 1995. "Catholic Schools, Dropout Rates and Educational Attainment," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 33(2), pages 217-233, April.
    4. Joseph G. Altonji & Todd E. Elder & Christopher R. Taber, 2005. "An Evaluation of Instrumental Variable Strategies for Estimating the Effects of Catholic Schooling," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 40(4), pages 791-821.
    5. Neal, Derek, 1997. "The Effects of Catholic Secondary Schooling on Educational Achievement," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(1), pages 98-123, January.
    6. Sherrilyn Billger, 2002. "Admitting men into a women's college: A natural experiment," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 9(7), pages 479-483.
    7. William N. Evans & Robert M. Schwab, 1995. "Finishing High School and Starting College: Do Catholic Schools Make a Difference?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 110(4), pages 941-974.
    8. Christopher Jepsen, 2003. "The Effectiveness of Catholic Primary Schooling," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 38(4).
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    Cited by:

    1. Schneeweis, Nicole & Zweimüller, Martina, 2012. "Girls, girls, girls: Gender composition and female school choice," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 482-500.
    2. Susanne Link, 2012. "Single-Sex Schooling and Student Performance: Quasi-Experimental Evidence from South Korea," ifo Working Paper Series 146, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
    3. Strain, Michael R., 2013. "Single-sex classes & student outcomes: Evidence from North Carolina," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 73-87.
    4. Goodkind, Sara & Schelbe, Lisa & Joseph, Andrea A. & Beers, Daphne E. & Pinsky, Stephanie L., 2013. "Providing new opportunities or reinforcing old stereotypes? Perceptions and experiences of single-sex public education," Children and Youth Services Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(8), pages 1174-1181.
    5. Anelli, Massimo & Peri, Giovanni, 2015. "Peers' Composition Effects in the Short and in the Long Run: College Major, College Performance and Income," IZA Discussion Papers 9119, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Benoît Rapoport & Claire Thibout, 2016. "Why Do Boys and Girls Make Different Educational Choices? The Influence of Expected Earnings and Test Scores," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2016n01, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    7. Doris, Aedín & O’Neill, Donal & Sweetman, Olive, 2013. "Gender, single-sex schooling and maths achievement," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 104-119.
    8. Susanne Link, 2013. "Institutional Determinants of Student Achievement - Microeconometric Evidence," ifo Beiträge zur Wirtschaftsforschung, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, number 50.

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