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Education Working Paper
No. 9  April 2005


The Effect of Residential School Choice on Public High School Graduation Rates

References

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Center for Civic Innovation.

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EWP 9 PDF (63 kb)

WHAT THE PRESS SAID

SUMMARY:
This study finds that decreasing the size of school districts has a substantial and statistically significant positive effect on high school graduation rates, while consolidating school districts leads to more students dropping out of high school. The study indicates that decreasing the size of state's school districts by 200 square miles leads to an increase of about 1.7 percentage points in its graduation rate. The authors argue that these improvements occur because decreasing the size of school districts increases the choice that parents have in the school system that educates their child, which motivates public school districts to compete for students by providing a higher quality education.

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

ABOUT EDUCATION WORKING PAPERS

INTRODUCTION

EDUCATIONAL OUTCOMES AND INCREASING PARENTAL SCHOOL CHOICE

CALCULATING GRADUATION RATES

METHOD

RESULTS

CONCLUSION

ENDNOTES

REFERENCES

Table 1: Average Square Miles/District by State

Table 2: Relationship Between Increasing Average Square Miles of School Districts and Graduation Rates

Table 3: Effect of Decreasing District Size to Benchmark Levels for Certain States

Table 4: Effect of Increasing District Size to Benchmark Levels for Certain States

 


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