Evanston residents concerned about continuing performance gaps among low-income students in local schools may find food for thought in a new report about a long-running school voucher program in Milwaukee.

The study, reported in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, concludes that publicly-funded voucher students at private schools perform about the same on standardized tests as do students with similar backgrounds attending the city’s public schools.

But it appears taxpayers may be saving money in sending students to the private schools, since the voucher payments are lower than the cost of running the public schools.

The Journal Sentinel story includes links to the full report from the School Choice Demonstration Project at the University of Arkansas.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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