Friday, December 03, 2010

Does Competition Improve Public Schools?

An important new study on the Florida tax-credit program which shows that students are nearby public schools benefit from the mere threat of competition:

Our results indicate that the increased competitive pressure public schools faced following the introduction of Florida's Tax Credit Scholarship Program led to general improvements in their performance. Both expanded access to private school options and greater variety of options that students have in terms of the religious (or secular) affiliations of private schools are positively associated with public-school students' test scores following the introduction of the FTC program. The gains occur immediately, before any students leave the public schools with a scholarship, implying that competitive threats are responsible for at least some of the estimated effects. And the gains appear to be much more pronounced in the schools most at risk to lose students (elementary and middle schools, where the cost of private school attendance with a scholarship is much lower) and in the schools that are on the margin of Title I funding.


Does Competition Improve Public Schools?

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