A1 Journal article – refereed

Effectiveness of private and public high schools: Evidence from Finland

List of Authors: Mika Kortelainen, Kalle Manninen

Publisher: Oxford University Press

Publication year: 2019

Journal: CESifo Economic Studies

Volume number: 65

Issue number: 4

Number of pages: 22

ISSN: 1610-241X

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cesifo/ifz014

URL: https://doi.org/10.1093/cesifo/ifz014


A number of papers have compared the effectiveness of private and public
schools in different institutional settings. However, most of these
studies are observational and do not utilize experimental or
quasi-experimental design to evaluate the value-added or the
effectiveness of private schools in comparison to public schools. This
study focuses on private and public high schools in Helsinki, the
capital city of Finland. We use two different methods to compare private
and public schools, value-added estimation and regression discontinuity
design (RDD). Although based on somewhat different assumptions, both
methods allow us to evaluate the causal effect of private schools on the
exit exam results in high school. We find that private schools perform
marginally better than public schools, but the difference in performance
is very small and statistically insignificant according to both
methods. Various robustness and validity checks strengthen our RDD
results and the validity of the discontinuity design.

Last updated on 2021-24-06 at 11:08