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  • Joanne Jacobs

Ohio vouchers led to higher district scores, less segregation

Ohio's EdChoice vouchers enable 60,000 students from low-income families to leave district schools for alternatives. The program has led to higher achievement and less racial segregation in public school districts, concludes an analysis by Stéphane Lavertu of Ohio State.


District spending has remained the same, the study found. The loss of state aid when students leave is balanced by the rise in local funding per pupil.


High-poverty districts have lost 10 to 15 percent of enrollment because of EdChoice, the study found. Most of the departing students are black or Hispanic.


District achievement scores rose from the second percentile to the sixth percentile, note Fordham's Aaron Churchill and Chad Aldis. That's very low, but it's "consistent with the program targeting low-achieving schools, thus increasing average district proficiency rates among remaining students."


The Vouchers Hurt Ohio coalition, which includes district administrators, school boards and lobbyists has sued the state in an effort to eliminate the program. But there's no evidence that EdChoice vouchers do hurt Ohio.


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