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The effect of charter schools on achievement and behavior of public school students

  • Imberman, Scott A.

Charter schools have seen dramatic growth over the last decade. However, we know little about how they affect traditional public schools. I look at how charters affect student outcomes in public schools using data from a large urban school district in the southwest. Unlike prior work that relies on school fixed effects, I address the endogenous location of charter schools using an instrumental variables strategy that relies on plausibly exogenous variation in local building supply. Results show that charters induce modest but statistically significant drops in math and language test scores, particularly for elementary students. However, results for middle and high school students show improvements in discipline.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 95 (2011)
Issue (Month): 7 ()
Pages: 850-863

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Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:95:y:2011:i:7:p:850-863
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

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  1. Gregory R. Weiher & Kent L. Tedin, 2002. "Does choice lead to racially distinctive schools? Charter schools and household preferences," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 21(1), pages 79-92.
  2. Caroline M. Hoxby & Sonali Murarka, 2009. "Charter Schools in New York City: Who Enrolls and How They Affect Their Students' Achievement," NBER Working Papers 14852, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Carmit Segal, 2008. "Classroom Behavior," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(4).
  4. Hanushek, Eric A. & Kain, John F. & Rivkin, Steven G. & Branch, Gregory F., 2007. "Charter school quality and parental decision making with school choice," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(5-6), pages 823-848, June.
  5. Cardon, James H., 2003. "Strategic quality choice and charter schools," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(3-4), pages 729-737, March.
  6. George M. Holmes & Jeff DeSimone & Nicholas G. Rupp, 2003. "Does School Choice Increase School Quality?," NBER Working Papers 9683, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. 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.
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  9. Scott E. Carrell & Mark L. Hoekstra, 2008. "Externalities in the Classroom: How Children Exposed to Domestic Violence Affect Everyone's Kids," NBER Working Papers 14246, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Booker, Kevin & Gilpatric, Scott M. & Gronberg, Timothy & Jansen, Dennis, 2008. "The effect of charter schools on traditional public school students in Texas: Are children who stay behind left behind?," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 123-145, July.
  11. Robert Bifulco & Helen F. Ladd, 2006. "The Impacts of Charter Schools on Student Achievement: Evidence from North Carolina," Education Finance and Policy, MIT Press, vol. 1(1), pages 50-90, January.
  12. Richard Buddin & Ron Zimmer, 2005. "Student achievement in charter schools: A complex picture," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(2), pages 351-371.
  13. Booker, Kevin & Gilpatric, Scott M. & Gronberg, Timothy & Jansen, Dennis, 2007. "The impact of charter school attendance on student performance," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(5-6), pages 849-876, June.
  14. Scott Imberman, 2008. "Achievement and Behavior in Charter Schools: Drawing a More Complete Picture," Working Papers 2009-01, Department of Economics, University of Houston.
  15. James J. Heckman & Jora Stixrud & Sergio Urzua, 2006. "The Effects of Cognitive and Noncognitive Abilities on Labor Market Outcomes and Social Behavior," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 411-482, July.
  16. Bettinger, Eric P., 2005. "The effect of charter schools on charter students and public schools," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 24(2), pages 133-147, April.
  17. Hanushek, Eric A. & Rivkin, Steven G., 2006. "Teacher Quality," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier.
  18. Eric A. Hanushek & John F. Kain & Steven G. Rivkin & Daniel M. O'Brien, 2005. "The Market for Teacher Quality," Discussion Papers 04-025, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  19. Tim R. Sass, 2006. "Charter Schools and Student Achievement in Florida," Education Finance and Policy, MIT Press, vol. 1(1), pages 91-122, January.
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