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Education systems globally have implemented school choice policies with the stated objective of improving equity. We study the impacts of change in a city-wide choice policy that sought to advance equity by broadening access for lower-testing students to public junior high schools in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. This policy change implemented in 2018 shifted the admissions focus away from test scores to distance from a student’s neighbourhood to the school. We find that this policy greatly improved equity in access. The share of public school students who scored below median on the mathematics grade 6 leaving exam increased from 35 to 47 per cent, and the average grade 6 exam scores of students enrolled in public schools declined by 0.3 standard deviations. However, learning also declined significantly. Two years after the policy was first implemented, overall learning in grade 8 mathematics declined by 0.2 standard deviations. While lower-scoring students new to public schools benefited from this policy, learning among this group was eclipsed by the decline in learning among all other student groups. Value-added of public schools declined across the full distribution of grade 6 exam scores, although it was still higher than that of private schools. The effect on value-added varied by school and was independent from the size of the change in student composition, demonstrating that some public schools were better able to adapt to a change in their student composition than others.