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Court-Ordered Finance Reforms in the Adequacy Era: Heterogeneous Causal Effects and Sensitivity

Wednesday, February 22, 2017,
  • Location: Mayborn Building • 130 Magnolia Cir • Nashville, TN 37212
  • Room: 204

Presented by Dr. Christopher Candelaria, Vanderbilt University

Authors: Christopher A. Candelaria (Vanderbilt University) & Kenneth A. Shores (University of Pennsylvania)

Abstract:
We provide new evidence about the effect of court-ordered finance reforms that took place between 1989 and 2010 on per-pupil revenues and graduation rates. We account for heterogeneity in the treated and counterfactual groups to estimate the effect of overturning a state's finance system. Seven years after reform, the highest poverty quartile in a treated state experienced a 11.5 to 12.1 percent increase in per-pupil spending and a 6.8 to 11.5 percentage point increase in graduation rates. We subject the model to various sensitivity tests, which provide upper and lower bounds on the estimates. Estimates range, in most cases, from 6 to 12 percentage points for graduation rates. JEL codes: C23, I26