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Research & Tools On Vouchers



"What have you got against private school vouchers?" your brother-in-law demands over Sunday dinner. Ah, if he only knew the facts. Next time someone puts you on the spot, use these talking points to debunk the most popular voucher claims.


Vouchers: What the Research Says

School Vouchers: Publicy Funded Programs in Cleveland and Milwaukee (2001) The U.S. Government Accounting Office (GAO) issued a report ( PDF, 54 pages ) that found only minimal differences in student achievement between voucher-eligible students who attended public and private schools.

The Effects of Vouchers on School Improvement: Another Look at the Florida Data (2002)
Haggai Kupermintz of the University of Colorado at Boulder argues that improvements in Florida public schools were the result of targeting students' writing skills, not vouchers.

Free Market Policies and Public Education: What is the Cost of Choice? (1999)
Education researcher Kim Metcalf reviewed voucher research, pro and con, and expresses concerns about the "costs of choice."

Educational Vouchers: A Review of the Research (1999)
Alex Molnar studied the effects of class size reductions versus vouchers and has found vouchers lacking.

Information Underload: Floria's Flawed Special-Ed Voucher Program (2007)
Education Sector, an independent education think tank, released this report describing Florida's special education voucher program as "seriously flawed." More»

Cleveland Vouchers Produce No Gains

Evaluation of the Cleveland Scholarship and Tutoring Program 1998-2002
Professor Kim Metcalf at Indiana University released the third and final report in a longitudinal study concluding the voucher scheme is not producing achievement gains by private or public school students. Read the December 2003 report's executive summary here.

Report Cites Dangers of Colorado Voucher Law

Replicating Failure, Colorado Vouchers Mimic Other States' Mistakes
The People for the American Way Foundation issued a report about Colorado's school voucher law that cites the "high potential for abuse inherent in voucher programs, and examines parallels with the problems other cities and states have experienced with voucher laws, including Cleveland, Milwaukee, and Florida."

Research Undercuts Case for Private School Vouchers

Comparing Private Schools and Public Schools Using Hierarchical Linear Modeling (2006) ( PDF, 66 pages) This Department of Education-sponsored study concludes that public schools stack up well against private schools.

NEA Policy Brief on Vouchers

Vouchers: What Is at Stake? ( PDF, 164KB, 4 pp)
This NEA policy brief emphasizes our belief that great public schools are a civil right for every child. Vouchers do not improve the achievement of students who use them, and they do nothing to improve public schools. Instead, vouchers leave most children behind, especially those with special needs, and they create a need for additional bureaucracy to administer and monitor such programs. Fall 2009.

 


RELATED ITEMS

Evaluations of Existing Voucher Programs

School Vouchers: The Emerging Track Record
NEA produced this overview of independent evaluations of existing voucher programs. (2002)