Harvard Graduate School of Education
Cambridge, MA 02138
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|October 2017||School District Reform in Newark: Within- and Between-School Changes in Achievement Growth|
with Mark J. Chin, Thomas J. Kane, Beth E. Schueler, Douglas O. Staiger: w23922
In 2011-12, Newark launched a set of educational reforms supported by a gift from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan. Using data from 2009 through 2016, we evaluate the change in Newark students’ achievement growth relative to similar students and schools elsewhere in New Jersey. We measure achievement growth using a “value-added” model, controlling for prior achievement, demographics and peer characteristics. By the fifth year of reform, Newark saw statistically significant gains in English and no significant change in math achievement growth. Perhaps due to the disruptive nature of the reforms, growth declined initially before rebounding in recent years. Aided by the closure of low value-added schools, much of the improvement was due to shifting enrollment from lower- to hi...