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A Think Twice Review of:

Review of Are Charter Schools Safer Than District-Run Schools? Evidence from Pennsylvania | Review of Effects of Charter School Competition on District School Budgeting Decisions: Experimental Evidence from Texas

Think Twice - Jun 09, 2020

Publisher/Think Tank - Reason Foundation | Annenberg Institute at Brown University EdWorkingPaper Series

Author(s) - Corey A. DeAngelis | Corey A. DeAngelis and Christian Barnard

The first study describes how rates of reported low-incidence student infractions are lower in charters, on average. Analyses that include some statistical controls continue to yield results favorable to charters. The author concludes, “The public charter school sector advantages suggest that increasing access to public charter schools in Pennsylvania could improve school climate outcomes for students.” The second report aims to show that competition from the opening of an imagined nearby charter school can increase principals’ preference for budget autonomy and change how they allocate campus budgets to differing positions and instructional resources. The authors assert that their study offers “experimental evidence” that “anticipated charter school competition has large negative effects on school leaders’ reported spending on certain categories of support staff.”

Reviewer(s) - Bruce Fuller, University of California, Berkeley

Overall, Professor Fuller concludes, the two reports pose provocative questions about the possible advantages of charter schools, worth testing empirically, while falling short in building evidence to back their claims.