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The impact of tougher education standards: Evidence from Florida

  • Clark, Damon
  • See, Edward
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    Many of the policies that fall under the school accountability umbrella are designed to incentivize students. Prominent among these are high school exit exams, standardized tests that, in some states, students must pass to earn a high school diploma. Proponents of these tests argue that by incentivizing students, they induce them to work harder and, therefore, improve their high school performance and, perhaps, longer-run outcomes; some of these proponents argue that these exams would be even more helpful if they were set at a higher standard. Critics worry that these exams prevent some students from graduating and cause others to dropout; they contend that these effects are worse if standards are higher. In this paper we investigate the impacts of an increase in the exit exam standard in Florida. Using difference-in-difference methods, we show that this had few of the negative effects claimed by critics. We cannot detect any positive effects of the higher standard, although such effects may be too small to be picked up with our data.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S027277571100094X
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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economics of Education Review.

    Volume (Year): 30 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 6 ()
    Pages: 1123-1135

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:ecoedu:v:30:y:2011:i:6:p:1123-1135
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/econedurev

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