The Transformation of a School System

Principal, Teacher, and Parent Perceptions of Charter and Traditional Schools in Post-Katrina New Orleans

by Jennifer L. Steele, Georges Vernez, Michael A. Gottfried, Michael Schwam-Baird

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Hurricane Katrina set the stage for a transformation of public education in New Orleans, replacing the city's existing school system with a decentralized choice-based system of both charter and district-run schools. Using principal, teacher, and parent surveys administered three years after Katrina, this study examined schools' governance and operations, educational contexts, educator quality and mobility, and parental choice and involvement. The authors note that questions still remain about the variation in schools' policies and practices in the wake of the reform and about parents' experiences in an environment of school choice.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter One


  • Chapter Two

    Research Design

  • Chapter Three

    Governance and Operations

  • Chapter Four

    Educational Contexts

  • Chapter Five

    Educator Qualifications and Mobility

  • Chapter Six

    Parental Choice and Involvement

  • Chapter Seven

    School Performance in Relation to School Characteristics

  • Chapter Eight


  • Appendix A

    Statistical Models Used in the Analyses

  • Appendix B

    2009 RAND Survey of New Orleans Principals

  • Appendix C

    2009 RAND Survey of New Orleans Teachers

  • Appendix D

    2009 RAND Survey of New Orleans Parents

This work was prepared for the Scott S. Cowen Institute for Public Education Initiatives at Tulane University. The research was conducted in RAND Education, a unit of the RAND Corporation.

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