The Efficacy of Choice Threats within School Accountability Systems: Results from Legislatively Induced Experiments

17 Pages Posted: 8 May 2006

See all articles by Martin R. West

Martin R. West

Harvard Graduate School of Education

Paul E. Peterson

Harvard University - Department of Government (FAS); Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

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Abstract

Targeted stigma and school voucher threats under a revised 2002 Florida accountability law have positive impacts on school performance as measured by the test score gains of their students. In contrast, stigma and public school choice threats under the US federal accountability law, No Child Left Behind, do not have similar effects in Florida. Estimation relies upon individual-level data and is based upon regression analyses that exploit discontinuities within the accountability regimes. Choice threats embedded within accountability regimes can moderate educational inequalities by boosting achievement at the lowest-performing schools, but policy design is crucial.

Suggested Citation

West, Martin R. and Peterson, Paul E., The Efficacy of Choice Threats within School Accountability Systems: Results from Legislatively Induced Experiments. Economic Journal, Vol. 116, No. 510, pp. C46-C62, March 2006. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=887618 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-0297.2006.01075.x

Martin R. West (Contact Author)

Harvard Graduate School of Education ( email )

6 Appian Way
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Paul E. Peterson

Harvard University - Department of Government (FAS) ( email )

1737 Cambridge Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-8312 (Phone)
617-496-4428 (Fax)

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States
617-495-8312 (Phone)
617-496-4428 (Fax)

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