Department of Economics
Duke University, NC 27708, USA
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|October 2013||Small High Schools and Student Achievement: Lottery-Based Evidence from New York City|
with Atila Abdulkadiroğlu, Parag A. Pathak: w19576
One of the most wide-ranging reforms in public education in the last decade has been the reorganization of large comprehensive high schools into small schools with roughly 100 students per grade. We use assignment lotteries embedded in New York City's high school match to estimate the effects of attendance at a new small high school on student achievement. More than 150 unselective small high schools created between 2002 and 2008 have enhanced autonomy, but operate within-district with traditional public school teachers, principals, and collectively-bargained work rules. Lottery estimates show positive score gains in Mathematics, English, Science, and History, more credit accumulation, and higher graduation rates. Small school attendance causes a substantial increase in college enrollmen...