Home School Choice What / things School Choice Parents Consider Their Children’s Schools?

What / things School Choice Parents Consider Their Children’s Schools?

In case you have never seen it, Education Next last month released originates from its 2016 survey of oldsters with children in charter, district as well as schools and took a deep dive into your ends up with a write-up by Samuel Barrows, Paul Peterson and Marty West. May companion piece during which Albert Cheng and Paul Peterson examine data from the National Center for Education Statistics’ Parent and Family Involvement in Education Survey.

We think the project due to Harvard is an excellent check out the differences regarding the schooling sectors. However, i would be remiss as we didn’t point out that this universe of private school parents is varied. The conversation on parental satisfaction must include those parents whose children get involved in private school choice programs using mechanisms just like vouchers, tax-credit scholarships and education savings accounts.

As buzz grows louder regarding President-elect Donald Trump’s future education plans-and with several states gonna consider private educational choice bills in the upcoming legislative session-it’s necessary for everyone to recognise what are the key benefactors of these programs consider their schools. So, we digest the existing literature on parental satisfaction in three states with large or long-established private educational choice programs. While the following evidence lacks local comparison groups, its in line with earlier studies from Cleveland, Dayton, Milwaukee, New york, and Washington, D.C. this were creating those comparisons.


EdChoice (formerly the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice) has reports that gauge parental satisfaction in educational choice programs in three states. Jim Kelly and Ben Scafidi show into their report More Than Scores: An Analysis of Why and the way Parents Choose Private Schools that 84 percent of parents with children acquiring a tax-credit scholarship from Georgia’s largest scholarship-granting organization were very delighted by their scholarship school, utilizing the same scale as being the USDOE survey.


In Schooling Satisfaction: Arizona Parents’ Opinions on Using Education Savings Accounts, Jonathan Butcher and Jason Bedrick found 71 percent of Arizona education account (ESA) families were very delighted by their children’s education through Arizona’s ESA program C this was utilizing a seven-level Likert scale, which, beyond just the four categories for your national survey, included: satisfied, neutral, unsatisfied.


Earlier this year we conducted your own survey of two,056 school parents in Indiana, the fact that 1,185 had a minumum of one child doing the state’s voucher and/or tax-credit scholarship program in 2015C16. In Why Parents Choose: Market research of personal School and School Choice Parents in Indiana, we reveal that throughout the population of private school parents, include those with children playing an institution choice program were considerably more planning to say we were holding very satisfied when compared to non-participants. Interestingly, identical quantity of Indiana voucher and tax-credit scholarship parents said these were very satisfied when the national sample of private school parents, although our survey of Indiana parents included the neutral response sounding “neither satisfied nor dissatisfied” whilst the national survey could not. The accompanying chart shows the condition of significant differences to the Indiana parent responses plus the national parent responses; significant differences were not calculated from the authors from the other EdChoice reports.

?Difference from non-choice private school parents statistically significant at the 99% confidence level
*Difference from charter school parents statistically significant on the 99% confidence level
Notes: National respondents could choose one of four response categories: very dissatisfied, somewhat dissatisfied, somewhat satisfied, very satisfied. Indiana respondents had those categories and a fifth: neither satisfied nor dissatisfied. Raw percentages are widely-used because background characteristics cant be found collected during the survey of Indiana parents.
Sources: 2012 National Household Education Survey ends up with Albert Cheng and Paul E. Peterson, “How Satisfied are Parents with regards to their Children’s Schools? New Evidence coming from a U.S. Department of Education Survey,” Education Next 17, no. 2 (Spring 2017), https://www.educationnext.org/how-satisfied-are-parents-with-childrens-schools-us-dept-ed-survey; Andrew D. Catt and Evan Rhinesmith, Why Parents Choose: Market research of Private School and faculty Choice Parents in Indiana (Indianapolis: Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice, 2016), https://www.edchoice.org/research/why-parents-choose.

While there exists a plethora of studies that have checked the empirical evidence on school choice, parental satisfaction surveys are arguably equally important. Naturally, as Paul Peterson himself wrote nearly 20 years ago in conclusion of his research of school choice programs in multiple cities, “If just the thing that counts is consumer satisfaction, school options a particular winner.”[1] And the ever-growing body of evidence still agrees.

Drew Catt is Director of State Research and Policy Analysis at EdChoice. Evan Rhinesmith can be a Ph.D. candidate and Doctoral Academy Fellow during the University of Arkansas’s Department of Education Reform.


[1] Paul E. Peterson, “School Choice: A written report Card,” in Learning at school Choice, ed. Peterson and Bryan C. Hassel (Washington, DC: Brookings Institution, 1998), p. 18, http://www.brookings.edu/research/books/1998/schchoic.