The best success measure for schools

On Marginal Revolution, Tyler Cowen, has a good post about school vouchers. I particularly like this:

Frankly, I find a lot of the voucher advocates unconvincing, but let’s not forget the single most overwhelming (yet neglected) empirical fact about vouchers: they improve parent satisfaction.

I wrote something similar in this 2009 post on How to Save Education:

Ultimately, the true measure of the quality of a school isn’t the students’ scores on a standardized test, or the teachers’ level of certification.  Neither provide reliable information on quality of education.  A truer measure of the quality of a school is how many people are trying to get in relative to how many people are trying to get out.

Think about restaurants. If a thing such as standardized test scores existed for restaurants, how much would that influence your choice of where to eat dinner?

I’m guessing, not much. You would still have your preferences and be happy to have a selection to choose from.

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