ERIC Number: ED414376
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
School Choice in Cleveland and Milwaukee: What Parents Look For. Public Policy Forum Report.
Public Policy Forum, Inc., Milwaukee, WI.
The debate over school choice has been dominated by research findings that emphasize the impacts of school choice on standardized test results. This study of the attitudes of parents in Cleveland (Ohio) and Milwaukee (Wisconsin) indicates that test results are not what interest parents most when they are facing school choice. Parents are interested in what is being taught and who is teaching it, and they seldom mention results of achievement tests. Interviews with 270 parents, teachers, and school administrators in these 2 cities showed that information about the school's program, primarily the curriculum and method of instruction, is the most common piece of information parents want in making a decision about where to send their children. Information on teachers is the next most common thing parents mentioned. Other criteria parents mention, in order after school program and teachers, are: (1) school characteristics, such as class size and make-up of student body; (2) general school outcomes, such as development of lifetime skills and advancement to the next grade; (3) safety and discipline; (4) standardized test scores; (5) level of parent involvement; and (6) school reputation. Teachers and administrators also reported that what parents ask about most is the school's program. This agreement among parents is found for both public and private schools. (Contains eight tables.) (SLD)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Curriculum, Decision Making, Elementary Secondary Education, Institutional Characteristics, Outcomes of Education, Parent Attitudes, Private Schools, Public Schools, School Choice, School Safety, Standardized Tests, Teaching Methods, Test Results, Urban Schools
Public Policy Forum, Suite 406, 633 West Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53203; fax: 414-276-9962; e-mail: email@example.com; Internet: www.execp.com/~ppf
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Joyce Foundation, Chicago, IL.
Authoring Institution: Public Policy Forum, Inc., Milwaukee, WI.