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ERIC Number: EJ1150046
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Aug
Pages: 29
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0195-6744
The Impact of Being Labeled as a Persistently Lowest Achieving School: Regression Discontinuity Evidence on Consequential School Labeling
Saw, Guan; Schneider, Barbara; Frank, Kenneth; Chen, I-Chien; Keesler, Venessa; Martineau, Joseph
American Journal of Education, v123 n4 p585-613 Aug 2017
Since the No Child Left Behind Act was enacted, grading and labeling of schools as low performing have been increasingly used as means to incentivize failing schools to raise student achievement. Using statewide high school data from Michigan, our regression discontinuity analyses show that the bottom 5% of schools identified as persistently lowest achieving (PLA), which is publicly announced and has consequential accountability, increased their student performance in writing and to a lesser extent in mathematics and social studies. The PLA effect in writing is quite robust, based on various sensitivity analyses. We find no improvement in student achievement for the bottom 6% to 20% of schools labeled as "watch list" that received no actual penalties and little public attention. Our findings suggest that schools respond differently to varying forms of labeling as low performing, depending on the levels of accountability pressure and social stigmatization.
University of Chicago Press. Journals Division, P.O. Box 37005, Chicago, IL 60637. Tel: 877-705-1878; Tel: 773-753-3347; Fax: 877-705-1879; Fax: 773-753-0811; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Michigan
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A