Skip to content
Center for Policy Research

Working Paper

Technical Efficiency of Public Middle Schools in New York City

William C. Horrace, Michah W. Rothbart & Yi Yang

C.P.R. Working Paper No. 235

November 2020

William C. Horrace

William C. Horrace

Michah Rothbart

Michah W. Rothbart


Using panel data and a “true” fixed effect stochastic frontier model, the authors estimate persistent and transient technical inefficiency in mathematics (Math) and English Language Arts (ELA) test score gains in New York City public middle schools from 2014 to 2016. The authors compare several measures of transient technical inefficiency and show that around 58 percent of NYC middle schools are efficient in Math gains, while 16 percent are efficient in ELA gains. Multivariate inference techniques are used to determine subsets of efficient schools, providing actionable decision rules to help policymakers target resources and incentives.

Center for Policy Research
426 Eggers Hall