Institute for Research in Economic and Fiscal issues

IREF Europe - Institute for Research in Economic and Fiscal issues

Fiscal competition
and economic freedom


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School Choice Success in the US

The Friedman Foundation has published a report about the 22 American States that enforce school choice thanks to vouchers. Children’s work is better, teaching’s quality has improved and the overall cost of the school system is cheaper which is a benefit to low-income families.

The IREF showed in a recent study that Sweden’s system school was efficiently reformed thanks to vouchers. Schools are free and truly independent. Other European countries as the Netherlands also implemented vouchers. But if these information are not well-known in Europe, it is not the case in the United States. Vouchers are studied extensively and the Friedman Foundation has just published a report on school choice in the US. Indeed, school choice allows parents to choose the school they want thanks to vouchers given by the state and accepted by schools whether they are public or private.

This Friedman Foundation’s report analyzed 41 school choice programs in the 22 American states. Results are clear: the academic quality has improved and the teaching quality of the chosen schools has been upgraded too. Competition between private and public schools had a positive impact on teachings and on costs lowering. Schools were forced to adapt their management and gave more information to parents about expenditures. In well-managed schools, some activities were financed thanks to the parents’ money. Individuals or companies can also donate to private schools. The report points out that low-income families and minorities take advantage of this system.

The most important consequence of school choice lies in parents and schools responsibility. Parents can choose the best schools for their children and schools are held accountable of their management. Therefore, schools are looking for the best teachers and teaching methods.

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