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Does additional spending help urban schools?: an evaluation using boundary discontinuities

Gibbons, Stephen, McNally, Sandra and Viarengo, Martina (2012) Does additional spending help urban schools?: an evaluation using boundary discontinuities. IZA discussion paper (6281). Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), Bonn, Germany.

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Improving the educational attainment of disadvantaged students in urban schools is a priority for policy worldwide, but existing research is equivocal about the effectiveness of additional funding for achieving this objective. This study exploits anomalies in the spatial dimension of school funding policy in England to provide new evidence on this question. An "area cost adjustment" and other aspects of the formula that allocates central grants to Local Authorities (school districts) means that neighbouring schools with similar intakes, operating in the same labour market and facing the same prices for inputs can receive very different incomes. We find that these funding disparities give rise to sizeable differences in pupil attainment in national tests at the end of primary school. This shows that school resources have an important role to play in improving educational attainment. The results have direct implications for the current "Pupil Premium" policy in England.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2012 Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)
Divisions: Geography & Environment
Centre for Economic Performance
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
L Education > L Education (General)
JEL classification: H - Public Economics > H5 - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies > H52 - Government Expenditures and Education
I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I2 - Education > I21 - Analysis of Education
R - Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics > R0 - General
Sets: Departments > Geography and Environment
Collections > Economists Online
Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Date Deposited: 09 Jul 2012 09:47
Last Modified: 27 Jan 2021 00:42

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