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Socioeconomic status or noise? Tradeoffs in the generation of school quality information

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  • Alejandra Mizala
  • Pilar Romaguera
  • Miguel Urquiola

Abstract

This paper calculates a time series of simple, standard measures of schools’ relative performance. These are drawn from a 1997-2004 panel of Chilean schools, using individual-level information on test scores and student characteristics for each year. The results suggest there is a stark tradeoff in the extent to which rankings generated using these measures: i) can be shown to be very similar to rankings based purely on students’ socioeconomic status, and ii) are very volatile from year to year. At least in Chile, therefore, producing a meaningful ranking of schools that may inform parents and policymakers may be harder than is commonly assumed.

Suggested Citation

  • Alejandra Mizala & Pilar Romaguera & Miguel Urquiola, 2006. "Socioeconomic status or noise? Tradeoffs in the generation of school quality information," Documentos de Trabajo 225, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
  • Handle: RePEc:edj:ceauch:225
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    9. Kenneth Y. Chay & Patrick J. McEwan & Miguel Urquiola, 2005. "The Central Role of Noise in Evaluating Interventions That Use Test Scores to Rank Schools," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1237-1258, September.
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    14. Hsieh, Chang-Tai & Urquiola, Miguel, 2006. "The effects of generalized school choice on achievement and stratification: Evidence from Chile's voucher program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(8-9), pages 1477-1503, September.
    15. Ritva Reinikka & Jakob Svensson, 2004. "Local Capture: Evidence from a Central Government Transfer Program in Uganda," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 119(2), pages 679-705.
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    Cited by:

    1. Dennis Epple & Richard E. Romano & Miguel Urquiola, 2017. "School Vouchers: A Survey of the Economics Literature," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 55(2), pages 441-492, June.
    2. Camargo, Braz & Camelo, Rafael & Firpo, Sergio & Ponczek, Vladimir, 2014. "Information, Market Incentives, and Student Performance," IZA Discussion Papers 7941, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    3. MacLeod, W. Bentley & Urquiola, Miguel, 2012. "Competition and Educational Productivity: Incentives Writ Large," IZA Discussion Papers 7063, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    4. Jane Friesen & Mohsen Javdani & Justin Smith & Simon Woodcock, 2012. "How do school ‘report cards’ affect school choice decisions?," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 45(2), pages 784-807, May.
    5. Zoghbi, Ana Carolina & Rocha, Fabiana & Mattos, Enlinson, 2013. "Education production efficiency: Evidence from Brazilian universities," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 94-103.
    6. de Hoyos, Rafael & Garcia-Moreno, Vicente A. & Patrinos, Harry Anthony, 2017. "The impact of an accountability intervention with diagnostic feedback: Evidence from Mexico," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 123-140.
    7. Cáceres-Delpiano, Julio & Giolito, Eugenio & Castillo, Sebastián, 2018. "Early impacts of college aid," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 154-166.
    8. Fack, Gabrielle & Grenet, Julien, 2010. "When do better schools raise housing prices? Evidence from Paris public and private schools," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(1-2), pages 59-77, February.
    9. Nunes, Luis C. & Reis, Ana Balcão & Seabra, Carmo, 2015. "The publication of school rankings: A step toward increased accountability?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 15-23.
    10. Raymundo M. Campos Vázquez & Freddy D. Urbina Romero, 2011. "Desempeño educativo en México: la prueba Enlace," Estudios Económicos, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Económicos, vol. 26(2), pages 249-292.
    11. Bernardo Lara & Alejandra Mizala & Andrea Repetto, 2009. "The Effectiveness of Private Voucher Education: Evidence from Structural School Switches," Documentos de Trabajo 263, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
    12. W. Bentley MacLeod & Miguel Urquiola, 2018. "Is Education Consumption or Investment? Implications for the Effect of School Competition," NBER Working Papers 25117, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Johnson, Doug & Parrado, Andres, 2021. "Assessing the assessments: Taking stock of learning outcomes data in India," International Journal of Educational Development, Elsevier, vol. 84(C).
    14. Thieme, Claudio & Prior, Diego & Tortosa-Ausina, Emili, 2013. "A multilevel decomposition of school performance using robust nonparametric frontier techniques," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 32(C), pages 104-121.
    15. W. Bentley MacLeod & Miguel Urquiola, 2009. "Anti-Lemons: School Reputation and Educational Quality," NBER Working Papers 15112, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Levon Barseghyan & Damon Clark & Stephen Coate, 2014. "Public School Choice: An Economic Analysis," NBER Working Papers 20701, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    17. Berlinski, Samuel & Ramos, Alejandra, 2020. "Teacher mobility and merit pay: Evidence from a voluntary public award program," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 186(C).
    18. Jorge Calero & Josep-Oriol Escardíbul, 2007. "Evaluación de servicios educativos: el rendimiento en los centros públicos y privados medido en PISA-2003," Hacienda Pública Española / Review of Public Economics, IEF, vol. 183(4), pages 33-66, december.
    19. Mizala, Alejandra & Urquiola, Miguel, 2013. "School markets: The impact of information approximating schools' effectiveness," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 313-335.
    20. Alejandra Mizala & Miguel Urquiola, 2007. "Parental choice and school markets: The impact of information approximating school effectiveness," Documentos de Trabajo 239, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
    21. Nicolás Grau, 2016. "A Dynamic Model of Elementary School Choice," Working Papers wp417, University of Chile, Department of Economics.
    22. Barrera-Osorio, Felipe & Raju, Dhushyanth, 2017. "Teacher performance pay: Experimental evidence from Pakistan," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 148(C), pages 75-91.
    23. De Hoyos Navarro,Rafael E. & Holland,Peter Anthony & Troiano,Sara, 2015. "Understanding the trends in learning outcomes in Argentina, 2000 to 2012," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7518, The World Bank.

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