Title

You Can’t Always Get What You Want: Using “Broken Lotteries” to Check the Validity of Charter School Evaluations using Matching Designs

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

7-1-2017

Keywords

school choice, charter schools, research methods, student matching

Abstract

We consider situations in which public charter school lotteries are neither universally conducted nor consistently documented. Such lotteries produce “broken” Randomized Control Trials, but provide opportunities to assess the internal validity of quasi-experimental research designs. Here, we present the results of a statewide charter school evaluation using a broad-based student matching evaluation design, and run two additional analyses using the charter application wait-lists as robustness checks. Our additional models, which address concerns of self-selection by using only charter applicants as matched comparison students, yield similar effect estimates and thus provide support for the use of matching designs in charter school evaluations.

Comments

EDRE Working Paper 2017-15