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Editorial: The Great Voucher Research Conundrum

Mike McShane is a Forbes’ contributor who studies K-12 education, including entrepreneurship and school choice.

There has been a mountain of research conducted on private school choice programs. At our last count, more than 140 studies attempt to in some way measure the impact that these programs have on students.

In the popular perception (well, as popular as parsing the research literature on school choice can be) there is a conundrum at the heart of the research: students who participate in these programs are not helped by them, while students who don’t participate are.

How could this be? How could private school choice programs be more beneficial to the students who are left behind in public schools than those that use them to attend private schools?

Mike McShane