Informing the Debate: Comparing Boston's Charter, Pilot, and Traditional Schools

Informing the Debate: Comparing Boston’s Charter, Pilot and Traditional Schools. 2009. Boston Foundation Research Report. Atila Abdulkadiroglu, Josh Angrist, Sarah Cohodes, Susan M. Dynarski, Jon Fullerton, Thomas Kane and Parag Pathak.


Findings of groundbreaking study suggest charter school students in Boston outperform their peers at other public schools in Boston. Results for pilot schools were less clear; some analyses showed positive results at the elementary and high school level, while results for middle school students were less encouraging. The study uses an innovative research design based on school lotteries that allowed for a direct comparison of charter and pilot school students with their peers.

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