Inequitable access to good quality education is an ongoing issue in the United States. State and federal school voucher programs have been introduced to attempt to help combat this issue. Using Wooster, Ohio as a base reference, the impact of school vouchers on guardian education contribution is studied. This paper hypothesizes that awareness and provision of vouchers increases guardian monetary education contribution. Expected utility, consumer theory and budget constraints are used to model this hypothesis. Using mTurk as a crowdsourcing platform, a survey of guardians with children in the K-8 public system in the United States was conducted. The survey gathered information on household characteristics, demographics and willingness and interest in attending private schools and using vouchers. This relationship is studied using two different regression models. The first model estimates the relationship between guardian awareness of vouchers and guardian education contribution. The second model estimates the relationship between provision of vouchers to guardians and their willingness to contribute an additional $1,600 out of pocket to pay for a private school. This study suggests that this hypothesis is true through two major findings. The first finding suggests that awareness of vouchers leads to a $1,548 increased contribution to their child’s education. The second finding suggests that providing guardians with a voucher increases their willingness to pay an additional $1,600 to send their child to a private school by 2.4%.


Krause, Brooke




Education Economics


School Vouchers, Consumer Theory

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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