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ERIC Number: ED425520
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Apr
Pages: 36
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
School Quality and Social Stratification: The Determinants and Consequences of Parental School Choice.
Glazerman, Steven M.
Those who favor expansion of consumer choice in education claim that competition would force schools to improve. Critics claim that it would sort students by race and class. A competitive market will provide what consumers demand, yet neither side has empirical evidence on such consumer preferences to back up their claims. This paper offers such evidence. This paper estimates a conditional logit model using data from a public school choice program in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in order to infer how families trade off the convenience of a shorter commute with school quality and peer group characteristics. The evidence suggests that consumer choice alone would not raise schools' academic performance. Parents in Minneapolis were not more likely to choose schools with high test scores or greater value added. Rather they preferred schools relatively close to home and ones where they were better represented ethnically and racially. The only discernable test score effect was one where families sought a match between their own child's ability and the mean ability level of similar students at the prospective school. Simulations suggest that expanding choice could ultimately lead to severe, but not total segregation by race and ethnicity. Unrestricted choice could present a tradeoff between consumer satisfaction today and increased racial segregation in the future. (Author/RJM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A