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School Choice InternationalExploring Public-Private Partnerships$
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Rajashri Chakrabarti and Paul E. Peterson

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780262033763

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262033763.001.0001

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Mobilizing the Private Sector in the United States: A Theoretical Overview

Mobilizing the Private Sector in the United States: A Theoretical Overview

(p.46) (p.47) 3 Mobilizing the Private Sector in the United States: A Theoretical Overview
School Choice International

Thomas J. Nechyba

The MIT Press

This chapter provides an overview organized around four types of competitive advantages that can explain the existence of private schools. First, private schools enjoy greater resource efficiency—that is, they may be more effective at translating dollars into outcomes valued by parents. Second, private schools are able to serve niche markets by more effectively targeting their pedagogical approach to the needs of particular subsets of families. Third, private schools derive an advantage from positive peer effects by skimming the cream of students. Finally, private schools allow parents to unbundle schooling and housing choices within a metropolitan area. The chapter begins with an overview of the complexity faced by education policy makers and the resulting complexity of an economic approach to analyzing the policy makers’ problem. The advantages mentioned above are also related to the benefits and costs of mobilizing the private sector.

Keywords:   private schools, resource efficiency, pedagogical approach, positive peer effects, economic approach, private sector

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