Measuring the Impacts of School Reforms in the District of Columbia on Student Achievement (Issue Brief)

Measuring the Impacts of School Reforms in the District of Columbia on Student Achievement (Issue Brief)

Published: Aug 12, 2021
Publisher: Mathematica
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Authors

Dallas Dotter

Maria Bartlett

Key Findings
  • The DC reforms were associated with larger than expected improvements in grade 4 math and reading scores on the National Assessment of Educational Progress.
  • The reforms were also associated with learning gains in grade 8 math but not in grade 8 reading.
  • Impacts of the reforms on National Assessment of Education Progress scores in math were largest for Black students.

In 2007, the Council of the District of Columbia passed bold school reforms. These reforms aimed to improve student achievement by hiring and retaining higher quality teachers and providing families in D.C. with more public school choices. This issue brief highlights evidence from a study that estimated the cumulative impacts of these reforms by analyzing how changes in achievement levels of DC schools compare to changes observed for similar students in similar geographic areas without such reforms.

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