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ERIC Number: EJ933129
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 31
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1557-3060
Local Demand for a School Choice Policy: Evidence from the Washington Charter School Referenda
Corcoran, Sean P.; Stoddard, Christiana
Education Finance and Policy, v6 n3 p323-353 Sum 2011
The expansion of charter schools--publicly funded, yet in direct competition with traditional public schools--has emerged as a favored response to poor performance in the education sector. While a large and growing literature has sought to estimate the impact of these schools on student achievement, comparatively little is known about demand for the policy itself. Using election returns from three consecutive referenda on charter schools in Washington State, we weigh the relative importance of school quality, community and school demographics, and partisanship in explaining voter support for greater school choice. We find that low school quality--as measured by standardized tests--is a consistent and modestly strong predictor of support for charters. However, variation in performance between school districts is more predictive of charter support than variation within them. At the local precinct level, school resources, union membership, student heterogeneity, and the Republican vote share are often stronger predictors of charter support than standardized test results.
MIT Press. 55 Hayward Street, Cambridge, MA 02142. Tel: 617-253-2889; Fax: 617-253-1709; e-mail: journals-rights@mit.edu; Web site: http://www.mitpressjournals.org/loi/edfp
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: Washington