Equity and Efficiency in Private and Public Education: A Nonparametric Comparison
22 Pages Posted: 16 Oct 2007
Date Written: September 2007
We present a nonparametric approach for the equity and efficiency evaluation of (private and public) primary schools in Flanders. First, we use a nonparametric (Data Envelopment Analysis) model that is specially tailored to assess educational efficiency at the pupil level. The model accounts for the fact that minimal prior structure typically available for the behavior (objectives and feasibility set) under evaluation, it reckons with outlier behavior in the available data, while it corrects for 'environmental' characteristics that are specific to each pupil. Second, we propose first- and second-order stochastic dominance (FSD and SSD) criteria as naturally complementary aggregation criteria for comparing the performance of different school types (private and public schools) in Flanders. While FSD only accounts for (Pareto) efficiency, SSD also takes (Pigou-Dalton) equality into consideration. We find that private schools outperform public schools in terms of SSD.
Keywords: equity, efficiency, private versus public education, non-parametric analysis, data envelopment analysis, stochastic dominance
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