Study examines public, private schools (AP)

A study being released today suggests that low-income students who attend urban public high schools generally perform just as well as their private-high school counterparts, according to an Associated Press wire story (click here).

The study, being released by the Washington-based Center for Education Policy, says private school students who took 12th grade-level achievement tests performed about the same as their public school counterparts when income and other family characteristics were taken into account.

See this excerpt:

While the finding is in line with a handful of recent studies, it’s at odds with a larger body of research over the years that has found private-school students outperform those in public schools. Some of that research found a private-school advantage even when income levels are taken into account.

However, the new study not only compared students by income levels but also looked at a range of other family characteristics, such as whether a parent participates in school life.

“When these were taken into account, the private-school advantage went away,” the report states.

The study looked at 1,000 low-income students from cities who are part of a nationally representative sample of kids surveyed over a period of years, along with parents and teachers, as part of a federal research effort.

In trying to determine whether the type of high school attended by a student made a difference academically, the new study tried to separate out the effects of income; earlier eighth-grade test scores; parental expectations; whether parents discuss school with their children and whether parents participate in school activities.

Click here to go to the report.

E.C. 🙂

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