Does attending a charter school Reduce the likelihood of being placed into special education? Evidence from Denver, Colorado
Winters, Marcus A.
Carpenter, Dick M.
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Citation (published version)Marcus A Winters, Dick M Carpenter, Grant Clayton. 2017. "Does Attending a Charter School Reduce the Likelihood of Being Placed Into Special Education? Evidence From Denver, Colorado." EDUCATIONAL EVALUATION AND POLICY ANALYSIS, Volume 39, Issue 3, pp. 448 - 463 (16).
We use administrative data to measure whether attending a charter school in Denver, Colorado, reduces the likelihood that students are newly classified as having a disability in primary grades. We employ an observational approach that takes advantage of Denver’s Common Enrollment System, which allows us to observe each school that the student listed a preference to attend. We find evidence that attending a Denver charter school reduces the likelihood that a student is classified as having a specific learning disability, which is the largest and most subjectively diagnosed disability category. We find no evidence that charter attendance reduces the probability of being classified as having a speech or language disability or autism, which are two more objectively diagnosed classifications.