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Catchment Areas and Access to Better Schools

  • Caterina Calsamiglia
  • Antonio Miralles

We compare popular school choice mechanisms in terms of children's access to better schools (ABS) than their catchment area school, in districts with school stratification and where priority is given for residence in the catchment area of the school. In a large market model with two good schools and one bad school, we calculate worst-case and best-case bounds of the Boston Mechanism (BM). We find that both BM and DA convey a non-negligible risk that catchment area priority fully determines the final assignment regardless parents' preferences. Top-Trading Cycles is an alternative that provides more access to better schools than DA.

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Paper provided by Barcelona Graduate School of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 631.

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Date of creation: Dec 2014
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Handle: RePEc:bge:wpaper:631
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  1. Atila Abdulkadiroglu & Parag A. Pathak & Alvin E. Roth & Tayfun Sönmez, 2006. "Changing the Boston School Choice Mechanism," Levine's Bibliography 122247000000001022, UCLA Department of Economics.
  2. Atila Abdulkadiroglu & Tayfun Smez, 2003. "School Choice: A Mechanism Design Approach," Discussion Papers 0203-18, Columbia University, Department of Economics.
  3. Parag A. Pathak & Tayfun Sönmez, 2011. "School Admissions Reform in Chicago and England: Comparing Mechanisms by Their Vulnerability to Manipulation," NBER Working Papers 16783, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Aytek Erdil & Haluk Ergin, 2008. "What's the Matter with Tie-Breaking? Improving Efficiency in School Choice," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 669-89, June.
  5. Caroline M. Hoxby, 2003. "The Economics of School Choice," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number hox03-1, June.
  6. Haluk Ergin & Tayfun Sönmez, 2005. "Games of School Choice under the Boston Mechanism," Boston College Working Papers in Economics 619, Boston College Department of Economics.
  7. Parag A. Pathak & Tayfun Sonmez, 2008. "Leveling the Playing Field: Sincere and Sophisticated Players in the Boston Mechanism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1636-52, September.
  8. Caroline Minter Hoxby, 2003. "Introduction to "The Economics of School Choice"," NBER Chapters, in: The Economics of School Choice, pages 1-22 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Atila Abdulkadiroglu & Yeon-Koo Che & Yosuke Yasuda, 2011. "Resolving Conflicting Preferences in School Choice: The "Boston Mechanism" Reconsidered," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(1), pages 399-410, February.
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