An Analysis of Private School Surveys and the Implications for Three States' Private School Choice Marketplaces: Looking at More Than Two Decades of Data on Colorado, Nebraska, and Nevada
Thursday, November 12, 2015
Riverfront South/Central (Hyatt Regency Miami)
*Names in bold indicate Presenter
Policymakers, school choice advocates, education media, and school choice researchers need to know how private school marketplaces in states have changed in terms of how many schools exist, their religious affiliation, association membership, open seats, potential school choice program participation, student-teacher ratios, how long students are in school, how large classes are, and the racial makeup of students, among other data points. This longitudinal study looks at changes in the private school marketplaces in Colorado, Nebraska, and Nevada from 1989-90 to 2014-15 by analyzing data from the National Center for Education Statistics’ Private School Universe Surveys, state departments of education, and statewide surveys. The following list is comprised of the applicable data points: number of K-12 open seats; number of schools potentially participating in statewide education savings account programs; number of schools potentially participating in statewide tax-credit scholarship programs; number of schools potentially participating in statewide voucher programs; number of schools with high or very high concern with various regulations; average and median tuition and fees charged by private schools; proportion of schools in each tuition range, by grade; number of schools providing tuition assistance; number of schools serving students with special needs; number of private schools and students by county, type of community, and city; average and median private school size; most common grade spans for private schools; proportion of private schools offering PK; proportion of private school high school graduates enrolling in four-year higher education institutions; racial makeup of private schools; length of private school year and day; average and median student-teacher ratios, including by full-time equivalent; percent of schools identifying as religious and denominations represented; and association memberships. The author explores: (1) to what extent the private school marketplace has changed in three states, (2) how the student bodies have changed in each private school marketplace analyzed, and (3) to what extent the student bodies have changed compared to the public school marketplace and overall demographics of each state’s citizenry. To the author’s knowledge, this is the most comprehensive longitudinal study of the private school marketplaces in these states. It focuses on the changes to each marketplace and the implications for the statewide school choice programs. The study should be highly relevant to policymakers and school choice advocates, who are closely involved in proposing and enacting private school choice programs, as well as their subsequent implementation.