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Demand (and Supply) in an Inter-District Public School Choice Program

  • Randall Reback

    ()

    (Barnard College, Columbia University)

This study examines parents’ demand for sending their children to a public school located outside their residential school district. Using a unique data set that contains information concerning both inter-district transfers and rejections of transfer applications, I am able to identify which school district characteristics attract the greatest demand for incoming transfers. The analyses reveal that mean student test scores are stronger predictors of transfer demand than both students’ socio-economic characteristics and school district spending, suggesting that parents care more about outcomes than inputs. In addition, while districts are only supposed to reject transfer students due to capacity concerns, districts’ supply decisions are also correlated with differences in student performance across neighboring districts.

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File URL: http://www.econ.barnard.columbia.edu/working_papers/wp0501.pdf
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File Function: Revised version, 2006
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Paper provided by Barnard College, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 0501.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2004
Date of revision: Feb 2006
Handle: RePEc:brn:wpaper:0501
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Web page: http://www.econ.barnard.columbia.edu/

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  1. David E. Campbell & Martin R. West & Paul E. Peterson, 2005. "Participation in a national, means-tested school voucher program," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(3), pages 523-541.
  2. Hastings, Justine S. & Kane, Thomas J. & Staiger, Douglas O., 2005. "Parental Preferences and School Competition: Evidence from a Public School Choice Program," Working Papers 10, Yale University, Department of Economics.
  3. Cullen, Julie Berry & Jacob, Brian A. & Levitt, Steven D., 2005. "The impact of school choice on student outcomes: an analysis of the Chicago Public Schools," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(5-6), pages 729-760, June.
  4. Julie Berry Cullen & Brian A. Jacob & Steven Levitt, 2003. "The Effect of School Choice on Student Outcomes: Evidence from Randomized Lotteries," NBER Working Papers 10113, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Brian A. Jacob & Lars Lefgren, 2005. "What Do Parents Value in Education? An Empirical Investigation of Parents' Revealed Preferences for Teachers," NBER Working Papers 11494, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Sandra E. Black, 1997. "Do better schools matter? Parental valuation of elementary education," Research Paper 9729, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  7. Lisa Barrow, 1999. "School choice through relocation: evidence from the Washington, D.C. area," Working Paper Series WP-99-7, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
  8. Reback, Randall, 2005. "House prices and the provision of local public services: capitalization under school choice programs," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(2), pages 275-301, March.
  9. Patrick Bayer & Fernando Ferreira & Robert McMillan, 2004. "Tiebout Sorting, Social Multipliers and the Demand for School Quality," NBER Working Papers 10871, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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