ERIC Number: ED161146
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1976
Reference Count: N/A
The Public Administration of the Public Schools: Complex Policy Models of Educational Achievement. Final Report.
Cnudde, Charles F.
Previous researchers, notably James Coleman, found that schools had very weak effects on student achievement and that socioeconomic factors had very strong effects. They made this discovery by measuring the effects of schools when socioeconomic factors were held constant, and they found negligible effects of schools. This study's hypotheses are based on the suggestion that Coleman's analyses may have ignored the dependence of school factors on socioeconomic level of parents. The study tested policy models of educational achievement that include the following types of complexities: the dependence between school and background variables, nonlinear effects of one or more independent variables on performance, and differential levels of measurement error leading to differential bias in the estimates of effects from independent variables. To test the hypotheses, the Coleman data were used in linear regression equations in which achievement scores are dependent on different combinations of independent variables. The findings indicate that school characteristics are dependent on the socioeconomic backgrounds of the families of the students. This suggests that school effects may be much stronger than previously believed but may themselves depend on the socioeconomic backgrounds of their neighborhoods. This analysis suggests the need for a return to research on which aspects of school practices lead to higher achievement results. (Author/JM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Michigan State Univ., East Lansing. Center for Public Policy Analysis.