ERIC Number: ED468062
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
The Impact of Internet Subsidies in Public Schools. NBER Working Paper Series.
Goolsbee, Austan; Guryan, Jonathan
As part of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, the U.S. government began subsidizing Internet and telecommunications access in classrooms and libraries through a tax on long-distance services (the E-Rate Program). This paper analyzes the impact of this program on public schools' technology adoption during 1996-2000, examining data on technology owned in each year by every school in California and administrative data on every E-Rate funding application these same schools filed. The study uses demographic data for each school and district from the National Center for Education Statistics Common Core of Data and 1990 U.S. Census. It examines whether schools with higher subsidy rates make greater investments in technology than they would have without the program and whether increases in Internet access impact student outcomes. Despite the strong pre-1998 income gradient of Internet access, E-Rate funding went disproportionately to low-Internet schools. The subsidy produced significant increases in Internet investment. By 2000, 66 percent more classrooms had Internet connections than they would have had without the subsidy. Urban schools and predominantly black and Hispanic schools disproportionately responded to the subsidy. The increase in Internet connections has had no measurable impact on student achievement. (Contains 19 references.) (SM)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Computer Uses in Education, Elementary Secondary Education, Federal Government, Federal Programs, Internet, Minority Group Children, Program Evaluation, Public Schools, Urban Schools
For full text: http://www.nber.org/papers/w9090.
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Science Foundation, Arlington, VA.; Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, New York, NY.; American Bar Association, Chicago, IL.
Authoring Institution: National Bureau of Economic Research, Cambridge, MA.
Identifiers - Location: California