Research has demonstrated that families are consistently willing to pay more for homes situated in catchments with better quality schools. However, few have considered whether other school characteristics are capable of capitalizing home values in this way. Using data from the city of Chicago, we investigate whether traditional magnet schools may place upward economic pressure on adjoining neighborhood home prices. We also examine this possibility for Chicago’s “magnet clusters”—which are themed schools and connote magnet status, but utilize locally zoned boundaries. After controlling for neighborhood composition, only traditional magnet schools, with broader enrollment policies, were consistently associated with higher home values. We find, however, that this relationship operates mostly through systematic differences in school quality, not differences in school typology per se.


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pp. 84-103
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