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The Effectiveness of Public, Catholic, and Non-Religious Private Schools in Chile's Voucher System

  • Patrick McEwan

In 1980, Chile began financing public and most private schools with vouchers. This paper uses 1997 data on over 150 000 Chilean eighth-graders to compare Spanish and mathematics achievement in six types of public and private schools, including voucher schools operated by Catholic and non-religious institutions. Initial findings suggest that Catholic voucher schools have a small advantage over most public schools, once student and peer attributes are controlled for. There is no important difference in achievement between public and non-religious voucher schools, most of which were created in direct response to the 1980 reforms. In some cases, it appears that non-religious voucher schools produce slightly lower achievement than public schools. Accounting for selection bias reduces any private school advantages (or widens their disadvantages), although these estimates are not sufficiently precise to convincingly reject the null hypothesis of no selection bias.

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Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Education Economics.

Volume (Year): 9 (2001)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 103-128

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Handle: RePEc:taf:edecon:v:9:y:2001:i:2:p:103-128
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