Publishing information about school performance on the Internet is currently a ‘hype’ around the world. Many countries publish this information because they believe that this will benefit schools and parents. The assumption is that parents will use this information to assess the performance of schools and consequently choose a school on the basis of this information. Changes in school choice would then form a strong signal to schools to improve performance, with the net result being a better school system. This expectation, however, does not hold true in reality; the information is not used much by parents and, hence, their behavior does not send a strong signal to schools. This does not mean that the publication of school performance data on the Internet has no effect. School administrators do frequently refer to the information in order to know what is happening at other schools. They interpret and analyze this information in the context of competition with other schools, benchmarking themselves and learning from others. Schools do change their behavior in response to the influences of the information being public, albeit not in a deterministic and predictable manner.
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