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ERIC Number: EJ885370
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Apr
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 54
ISSN: ISSN-1380-3611
School Vouchers in Washington, DC: Achievement Impacts and Their Implications for Social Justice
Wolf, Patrick J.
Educational Research and Evaluation, v16 n2 p131-150 Apr 2010
The District of Columbia Opportunity Scholarship Program (OSP) is a school voucher initiative targeted to disadvantaged students in the US Capital. Vouchers worth up to $7,500 annually are awarded by lottery to students with family incomes near or below the federal poverty line. Students can then use their voucher at any of 60 participating private schools in DC. Is this program just? From the perspective of Rawlsian liberalism, an education program is just if it expands opportunity equally for all or at least improves the prospects for the "least advantaged" affected group. Since the OSP is a targeted program and not universally available to all students, it must satisfy Rawls's second condition, called "the difference principle", in order to be viewed as just. Evidence from a rigorous evaluation of the program suggests that the DC voucher program advances the cause of social justice, but with an important caveat. (Contains 6 tables and 6 notes.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: District of Columbia