Expanding School Enrollment by Subsidizing Private Schools: Lessons from Bogotá

63 Pages Posted: 12 Dec 2005 Last revised: 27 Jul 2009

See all articles by Claudia Uribe

Claudia Uribe

Inter-American Development Bank (IADB)

Richard J. Murnane

Harvard University - Harvard Graduate School of Education; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

John B. Willett

Harvard University - Harvard Graduate School of Education

Marie-Andrée Somers

Harvard University - Harvard Graduate School of Education

Date Written: October 2005

Abstract

Many countries use tax revenues to subsidize private schools. Whether these policies meet social objectives depends, in part, on the relative quality of education provided by the two types of schools. We use data on elementary school students and their teachers in Bogotá, Colombia to examine difference in resource mixes and differences in the relative effectiveness of public and private schools. We find that, on average, the schools in the two sectors are equally effective. However, they produce education using very different resource combinations. Moreover, there are large differences in the effectiveness of schools in both sectors, especially in the private sector. The results of our analysis shed light on the quantity-quality tradeoff that governments in many developing countries face in deciding how to use scarce educational resources.

Suggested Citation

Uribe, Claudia and Murnane, Richard J. and Willett, John B. and Somers, Marie-Andrée, Expanding School Enrollment by Subsidizing Private Schools: Lessons from Bogotá (October 2005). NBER Working Paper No. w11670. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=819831

Claudia Uribe (Contact Author)

Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) ( email )

1300 New York Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20577
United States

Richard J. Murnane

Harvard University - Harvard Graduate School of Education ( email )

6 Appian Way
Gutman Library 409
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-496-4820 (Phone)
617-496-3095 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-496-4820 (Phone)
617-496-3095 (Fax)

John B. Willett

Harvard University - Harvard Graduate School of Education ( email )

6 Appian Way
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-3401 (Phone)

Marie-Andrée Somers

Harvard University - Harvard Graduate School of Education ( email )

6 Appian Way
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

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