Sociological Theory and Methods
Online ISSN : 1881-6495
Print ISSN : 0913-1442
ISSN-L : 0913-1442
Special Issue : Educational Inequality in Comparative Perspective
A Cross-national Analysis of the Relations between School Choice and Effectiveness Differences between Private-Independent and Public Schools
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2010 Volume 25 Issue 2 Pages 183-205


     We apply propensity score matching to the estimation of the disparity in school effectiveness between theprivately owned, privately funded school sector and the public one in a sample of 25 countries in Europe,America and Asia. This technique allows us to distinguish between school choice and school effectivenessprocesses and thus, to account for selectivity induced variation in school effectiveness. We find two broadpatterns of private independent school choice: the choice as a social class reproduction choice; and thechoice of an outsider’s for a good-equipped school. As regards school effectiveness, our results show that,after controlling for selectivity and school choice processes, the initial higher reading scores of studentsin private-independent schools become comparable to those public schools students in a majority of countries. However, in a few countries average reading scores remain higher in the private independent sector even after introducing controls for school choice induced selectivity. The opposite pattern, namely of higher average reading scores in the public sector has also been found in four countries.

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© 2010 Japanese Association For Mathematical Sociology
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