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Projects

Regional Socio-Economic Conditions and Choice of School

The project assesses in how far parents already make active decisions regarding the choice between the general public primary schools and recognised confessional schools (public Protestant and Catholic primary schools) and opt for another than the school that is actually in charge. Population statistical as well as the school statistical data are used to assess social conditions for the primary school districts. Furthermore telephone interviews with parents regarding conditions of school choice are planned, relating to the original choice and its estimation a year on (panel survey).

Project description

The new school legislation in the federal state of North-Rhine Westphalia (NRW) brings an end to the primary school districts – in the city of Wuppertal, this takes place in  2008. From now on, parents are free to choose among the primary schools in the area. The project carried out by Wuppertal University in co-operation with the DIPF assesses in how far parents already make active decisions regarding the choice between the general public primary schools and recognised confessional schools (public Protestant and Catholic primary schools) and opt for another than the school that is actually in charge. We assume that the abolition of school districts will bear no strong effects because parents have already been able to enforce a decision for another primary school than the one officially in charge. Parents with an awareness of educational issues and whose own educational background is above average are more likely to enforce the educational ideas they have in mind for their children than those parents who are less educated and whose economic status will more likely make them accept the nearest available primary school. We can thus assume that the parental acceptance of the respective primary school in charge varies across the urban area of Wuppertal following regional differences in the social structure of the population.

The official school statistics do not deliver any information regarding the social structure of pupils – they only make statements regarding the nationality and religious belief, which are used to deduct the social status. Therefore, population statistical data are used as well as the school statistical data and aggregated to the primary school districts where possible, in order to assess social conditions for the primary school districts. It is furthermore necessary to ascertain places of residence by means of the pupils’ data records.
As a further step, we plan to conduct telephone interviews with parents regarding conditions of school choice in differently structured districts, relating to the original choice for a school as well as to its estimation a year on (panel survey). We assume that the parental decisions are subject to an assessment of benefits and costs.

Co-operations

Prof. Dr. Kerstin Schneider / Dr. Claudia Schuchart (Wuppertal University)

Funding

German Research Foundation

Project management

Horst Weishaupt

Project details

State:
Completed projects
Project type: Interdepartmental projects
Duration:
03/2008 - 02/2011
Department: Department of Educational Governance
Contact: Horst Weishaupt
last modified Nov 25, 2013