Provision and operation i use the ideas of school

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Provision and Operation I use the ideas of school “provision” and “operation” synonymously throughout this dissertation. In either case, they refer to the management of the school, whether it be public or private. These terms are often used to mark distinctions between public and private responsibilities for funding and running the school. Typical discussions of public and private schools lack any differentiation between the provision and finance of schools. This is a unique contribution of the public-private partnership literature (Malik, 2010). In particular, this literature shows that there are varying outcomes that result from different finance and provision combinations. For example, Woessmann (2006), in an analysis of 2003 PISA data, found that schools which were financed publicly and operated privately (i.e. delivery-based PPPs) had the most positive impact on student achievement, and had particular impact on reducing the SES effect on achievement. It is also important to outline the potential differences in school ownership , as in some public finance/private operation models schools are publicly owned (private management schools) and in some they are privately owned (charter schools). Contracting Use of the term “contracting” throughout this dissertation refers not to one specific type of PPP, but more broadly to those public-private partnerships in which the state directly contracts with non-state entities for the provision of educational services. Contracting is seen within all types of delivery-based PPPs – vouchers, education service
14 delivery, and private management. The term is used primarily to bring emphasis to the existence of the contract between public and private parties. Conceptual Framework This dissertation is guided by a conceptual model that aims to explain the successful engagement of the private sector in education, as proposed by Lewis and Patrinos (2011). I refer to this throughout the paper as the private sector engagement framework. The framework explains that public-private partnerships are able to impact high performance of schools, teachers, and students by leveraging private sector activity in four crucial spheres: (i) choice, (ii) competition, (iii) accountability, and (iv) autonomy (Table 2). The combination of these four indicators into one single framework is though- provoking. Apple (1999) suggests that the approaches of competition, markets, and choice are “seemingly contradictory” to principles of accountability, performance objectives, and standards (p. 6). The ability of these to be combined into a single framework and sought after simultaneously, however, demonstrates the ability of PPPs to combine positive aspects of the public and private sectors. This is primarily achievable through the contractual relationship, which allows PPP strategies to foster competition and choice through the private sector while controlling standards and objects through state regulation and quality assurance mechanisms.
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