Doctor of Education (EdD)
David A. Whitenack
Great Schools, Neoliberalism, parents, School choice, school selection, Title I schools
A neoliberal agenda to institute educational reform via school choice has created a school marketplace where parents and schools are connected in a supply-and-demand relationship. Rather than attend the neighborhood school, some parents can seek alternative school options for their children. Although purported to improve educational outcomes and desegregate schools, school choice has not demonstrated increased student academic achievement nor integrated school spaces. Instead, the school choice movement has been seen to contribute to and perpetuate racial and economic segregation. This study sought to understand the perspectives of parents who have selected their neighborhood Title I school and how they navigated the school choice process; with an additional layer exploring Latine parents and school choice (in this study, the term Latine is used as an ungendered term to describe Latino, Latina, Hispanic, Chicano, or Chicana groups of people). Furthermore, this study collected recommendations from parents on how the school could improve communication with prospective parents. This study contributes several unique findings to the body of research including (a) parent selection of the Title I school in support of public education, (b) resistance to GreatSchools ratings, and (c) a desire to resist external pressure that uses academic achievement to identify good schools. The study concludes with practical suggestions for schools to consider when communicating with prospective parents with specific considerations for Latine parents.
Ballantyne, Christina Lee, "“It Feels Like a Cultural Shift": Parent School Selection and Experiences with School Choice at Title I Schools" (2023). Dissertations. 76.