Three Essays on Education Policy
Phelan, Gregory Ryan
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The impact of public policy on education can be substantial. This holds true whether we are considering students in primary and secondary schools, school administrators, or college students. Moreover, the effects of education policy may be greatest for groups of vulnerable or disadvantaged students. My research examines three pieces of education policy in Texas, and the impacts of these policies on students and school principals. The first essay evaluates the efficacy of a state-funded scholarship provided to low income college bound students that demonstrate a significant amount of academic promise. The second essay analyzes the role that school accountability ratings and performance information plays in the labor market outcomes of Texas school principals. The third essay characterizes the set of students that enroll in full-time online virtual schools in Texas that are publicly funded, but run managed by privately owned Education Management Organizations.