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The Impact of Chicago's Small High School Initiative
This project examines the effects of the introduction of new small high schools on student performance in the Chicago Public School (CPS) district. Specifically, we investigate whether students attending small high schools have better graduation/enrollment rates and achievement than similar students who attend regular CPS high schools. We show that students who choose to attend a small school are more disadvantaged on average, including having prior test scores that are about 0.2 standard deviations lower than their elementary school classmates. To address the selection problem, we use an ...
The Role of Selective High Schools in Equalizing Educational Outcomes: Heterogeneous Effects by Neighborhood Socioeconomic Status
We investigate whether elite Chicago public high schools can help close the achievement gap between high-achieving students from more and less affluent neighborhoods. Seats are allocated based on prior achievement with 70 percent reserved for high-achieving applicants from four neighborhood socioeconomic status (SES) categories. Using regression discontinuity design, we find no effect on test scores or college attendance for students from high- or low-SES neighborhoods and positive effects on student reports of their experiences. For students from low-SES neighborhoods, we estimate ...
Is It Still an Econ Course? The Effect of a Standardized Personal Finance Test on the Learning of Economics
We study the implications of mixing economics and personal finance standardsin a high school course. Using administrative, survey, and testing data on collegestudents, we find evidence that personal finance instruction crowds out economicsinstruction. We find that students who received more instruction in economics scorealmost 5% higher on an economics test. Furthermore, we estimate the effect of beingassigned a certification test in personal finance as a part of this course. The effect ofthe certification test is not uniform across students. The test reduces the economicsscores of students ...