“The Treason of Images,” Rene Magritte, 1928-29 (“This is not a pipe.”)
(Guest post by Greg Forster)
Jay posted two “complete lists” of voucher research this week, and a number of people seem to have found them helpful. Jay and I have both spent a lot of time circulating these lists for years (they change over time, of course, as new research gets done). We keep on thinking we’ve circulated these lists so much that there can’t be much use in circulating them further, yet we keep on finding more people who say, “Wow, I’ve never seen anything like this before, this is really helpful!”
Well, if people found those two lists helpful, maybe they’d like to see some of the other lists that have been compiled. So here’s a meta-list: a list of complete lists of research.
Of course, this is not a complete list of the complete lists. If anyone wants to add more in the comment section, that will help make this page even more useful. And I’ll come back and update the list as needed, so that this page will remain a useful resource for people looking for all the research on vouchers.
Though no doubt others will think that my list of complete lists isn’t nearly complete enough. I hope they’ll compile their own lists of complete lists – the more the merrier. And when there are enough lists of complete lists out there, we’ll need to make a list of them, so that people can keep track of them all . . .
Of course, these lists are all “complete to my knowledge.” There may always be a study lurking out there that hasn’t been noticed – although on the voucher issue that’s a somewhat more remote possibility than it is with other issues.
Here’s my complete list of random-assignment studies on how voucher programs affect participants. And here’s Jay’s. (Hey, it’s my meta-list, so my list comes first.) Mine is designed to be a little more user-friendly for the lay reader. Jay’s contains more methodological information that will be useful to scholars. If you’re looking for something even more easy-to-use, the Friedman Foundation offers this handy one-page reference and this handy guide to the research issues. And for those who are really looking for a herniating experience on this subject, try reading (but don’t try lifting) Pat Wolf’s BYU Law Review article.
My complete list of studies on how vouchers affect public schools is in the “previous research” section of my new study on the Ohio EdChoice program. Here’s Jay’s. Again, mine is quick and user-friendly for the layman, Jay’s provides more methodological details. Jay’s also goes into other forms of competition in education besides vouchers. The Friedman Foundation also offers a handy guide and a handy reference to the issues.
If you’re looking for research on racial segregation in voucher programs as compared to public schools, I wrote a report that reviews all the evidence. To my knowledge, there have been no other studies of segregation in voucher programs since that report. (On the other hand, the report’s list of studies that look at private schools generally, rather than voucher programs specifically, is not complete.) If you’re looking for something shorter, once again the Friedman Foundation rides to your rescue.
And if you’re looking for research on tolerance for the rights of others and other civic values among voucher students as compared to public schools, Pat Wolf’s Education Next article is the place to go. (Education Next is really a great scholarly resource on education policy, don’t you think?) Friedman Foundation handy guides here and here.
Last year I made an effort to summarize all the research on all the issues relating to vouchers in this study. The sections covering random-assignment studies of voucher participants and studies of how vouchers affect public schools are now out of date, but the report will point you to a bunch of other studies on issues that don’t have enough of a body of research – or have too much of a body of research – to generate a “complete list.” For example, you’ll find a discussion of the evidence on questions like the fiscal impact of voucher programs, and whether vouchers provide all students with access to schooling.
On those last two subjects – fiscal impacts and whether the private school sector provides broad, inclusive access to schooling for all students – the Friedman Foundation offers handy guides (here and here) and references to the research issues (here and here).
And finally, here is a meta-list that will point you to a bunch of complete lists of research on issues related to vouchers. Personally, I’ve found this resource to be the most helpful of all.
NOTE: This post is edited as needed to keep it up to date.