School & District Management Report Roundup

Vouchers a Spur to Public Schools?

By Christina A. Samuels — May 06, 2008 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

“The Effect of Special Education Vouchers on Public School Achievement: Evidence From Florida’s McKay Scholarship Program”

Public school students made greater academic improvements as their school choices increased under Florida’s tuition voucher program, a study says.

Jay P. Greene and Marcus A. Winters, both senior fellows of the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, based in New York City, measured “exposure” to the McKay Scholarship Program based on how many schools that accepted vouchers were within close geographic proximity of a given public school. Public schools with many voucher-accepting schools nearby were considered to have greater exposure than those where the options were physically distant.

See Also

For background, previous stories, and Web links, read Vouchers.

McKay Scholarships are available for students with individualized education programs, which are required under federal law for students with disabilities. The vouchers let recipients attend public schools of their choice or private schools that accept the vouchers.

The study found that public school students with relatively mild disabilities made test-score improvements in mathematics and reading as more nearby private schools began participating in the McKay program. Students with severe disabilities appeared to be neither helped nor hurt by increased exposure to the program.

The authors do not offer reasons for the gains by students on Florida’s state assessment in reading and math. However, they write, “our results from evaluating Florida’s McKay program provide additional evidence that rather than being harmed, public schools respond to the challenge of exposure to school choice by improving the education they provide.”

Related Tags:

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Classroom Technology Webinar
Academic Integrity in the Age of Artificial Intelligence
As AI writing tools rapidly evolve, learn how to set standards and expectations for your students on their use.
Content provided by Turnitin
Recruitment & Retention Live Online Discussion A Seat at the Table: Chronic Teacher Shortage: Where Do We Go From Here?  
Join Peter DeWitt, Michael Fullan, and guests for expert insights into finding solutions for the teacher shortage.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Reading & Literacy Webinar
The Science of Reading: Tools to Build Reading Proficiency
The Science of Reading has taken education by storm. Learn how Dr. Miranda Blount transformed literacy instruction in her state.
Content provided by hand2mind

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

School & District Management 3 Things That Keep Superintendents in Their Jobs
Two experienced leaders say strong relationships with the community and school board make all the difference.
5 min read
Magnet attracting employee candidates represented by wooden dolls
iStock/Getty
School & District Management 5 Things to Know About How the Culture Wars Are Disrupting Schools
Disruptions were more acutely felt in districts with more affluent and white students, but there weren't always clear-cut political lines.
6 min read
Illustration of neutral warning symbols, with two standing out in the colors red and blue.
filo/DigitalVision Vectors + EdWeek
School & District Management Divisive Politics Are Harming Schools, District Leaders Say
A new survey reveals how tough the politics are for some leaders, especially in the suburbs.
8 min read
Illustration of tug of war.
Illustration by Laura Baker/Education Week, SvetaZi, and iStock/Getty
School & District Management Leading a City School District Is Tough. A New Program Aims to Ease the Way
Its creators hope to drive down big-city superintendent turnover by preparing candidates for the stresses of leadership.
3 min read
Woman standing on a paper boat with a tsunami wave approaching.
iStock/Getty Images Plus