Publications [#317801] of Helen F. Ladd

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Journal Articles

  1. Holbein, JB; Ladd, HF. "Accountability Pressure: Regression Discontinuity Estimates of How NCLB Affects Student Behavior." (May, 2016).
    (last updated on 2018/10/16)

    In this paper we examine how failing to make adequate yearly progress under No Child Left Behind (NCLB), and the accountability pressure that ensues, affects various non-achievement student behaviors. Using administrative data from North Carolina and leveraging a discontinuity in the determination of school failure, we examine the causal impact of accountability pressure both on student behaviors that are incentivized by NCLB and on those that are not. We find evidence that, as NCLB intends, pressure encourages students to show up at school and to do so on time. Accountability pressure also has the unintended effect, however, of increasing the number of student misbehaviors such as suspensions, fights, and offenses reportable to law enforcement. Further, this negative response is most pronounced among minorities and low performing students, who are the most likely to be left behind.

Helen F. Ladd