Skip Navigation

Pursuing Innovation: How Can Education Choice Transform K-12 Education in the U.S.?

April 19, 2016
By Patrick J. Wolf, Ph.D. and Anna J. Egalite, Ph.D.

This report summarizes the state of competition in American K–12 education. It pays particular attention to the prevalence and market penetration of charter schools, private school vouchers, and tax-credit scholarships as market reforms.

pursuinginnovation

This report summarizes the state of competition in American K–12 education. It pays particular attention to the prevalence and market penetration of charter schools, private school vouchers, and tax-credit scholarships as market reforms. The effect of added institutional competition from charters, vouchers, and tax-credit scholarships on the performance of district schools and education funding is examined using a survey of the high-quality research on that topic. These summaries and analyses suggest that growing educational competition from charter schools, vouchers, and tax-credit scholarship programs holds the promise of improving the productivity of district schools, subject to the effective design of school choice policies.

Seven research questions are addressed:

1. What is the general state of K–12 education in the U.S. as of 2012–13?

2. How much organizational competition exists in K–12 education, and what distinctive forms does it take?

3. Is overall competition in K–12 education increasing and, if so, at what rate?

4. Which forms of organizational competition are most likely to generate pressures for K–12 educational improvement and why?

5. What are the intermediate effects of organizational competition on educational outcomes?

6. What are the effects of organizational competition on education productivity?

7. What policy design elements appear to maximize the efficacy and productivity of competition based education reforms?

Article Tags
Education