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American Economic Journal: Economic Policy: Vol. 5 No. 2 (May 2013)

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Feeling the Florida Heat? How Low-Performing Schools Respond to Voucher and Accountability Pressure

Article Citation

Rouse, Cecilia Elena, Jane Hannaway, Dan Goldhaber, and David Figlio. 2013. "Feeling the Florida Heat? How Low-Performing Schools Respond to Voucher and Accountability Pressure." American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 5(2): 251-81.

DOI: 10.1257/pol.5.2.251

Abstract

While numerous studies have found that school accountability boosts test scores, it is uncertain whether estimated test score gains reflect genuine improvements or merely “gaming” behaviors. This paper brings to bear new evidence from a unique five-year, three-round survey conducted of a census of public elementary schools in Florida that is linked with detailed administrative data on student performance. We show that schools facing accountability pressure changed their instructional practices in meaningful ways, and that these responses can explain a portion of the test score gains associated with the Florida school accountability system. (JEL H75, I21, I28)

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Authors

Rouse, Cecilia Elena (Princeton U)
Hannaway, Jane (American Institutes for Research, Washington, DC)
Goldhaber, Dan (Center for Reinventing Public Education, U WA)
Figlio, David (Institute for Policy Research, Northwestern U)

JEL Classifications

H75: State and Local Government: Health; Education; Welfare; Public Pensions
I21: Analysis of Education
I28: Education: Government Policy

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