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Do Better Schools Matter? Parental Valuation of Elementary Education

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  • Sandra E. Black

Abstract

The evaluation of numerous school reforms requires an understanding of the value of better schools. Given the difficulty of calculating the relationship between school quality and student outcomes, I turn to another method and use house prices to infer the value parents place on school quality. I look within school districts at houses located on attendance district boundaries; houses then differ only by the elementary school the child attends. I thereby effectively remove the variation in neighborhoods, taxes, and school spending. I find that parents are willing to pay 2.5 percent more for a 5 percent increase in test scores. This finding is robust to a number of sensitivity checks.

Suggested Citation

  • Sandra E. Black, 1999. "Do Better Schools Matter? Parental Valuation of Elementary Education," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(2), pages 577-599.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:qjecon:v:114:y:1999:i:2:p:577-599.
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    1. repec:fth:prinin:357 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. David Card & Alan Krueger, 1996. "Labor Market Effects of School Quality: Theory and Evidence," Working Papers 736, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    3. David Card & Alan B. Krueger, 1996. "Labor Market Effects of School Quality: Theory and Evidence," NBER Working Papers 5450, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Joshua D. Angrist & Alan B. Keueger, 1991. "Does Compulsory School Attendance Affect Schooling and Earnings?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 106(4), pages 979-1014.
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