4 lessons learned from parents navigating Los Angeles' school choice process

4 lessons learned from parents navigating Los Angeles' school choice process

Date
Thursday, March 24, 2016

Excerpt from the piece by Kyle Stokes originally broadcast on Southern California Public Radio (89.3 KPCC):

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Parents in Los Angeles face an often-overwhelming array of choices for where to educate their children in a taxpayer-funded setting — from a charter school to an open-enrollment seat in a district-run school across town.

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To hedge their bets, most parents apply to multiple schools. A survey from the Center for Reinventing Public Education (CRPE) found 62 percent of parents in eight choice-rich cities considered at least two school options for their kids; more than two-thirds considered at least three options.

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Navigating the process of choosing a school is all about weighing the trade-offs between school options, said Ashley Jochim, the research analyst behind that CRPE parent survey. Think of it as "like buying a house."

"No school is going to offer everything that a family wants, so you're going to have to optimize," Jochim said.

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"Lower-income families are much less likely to have a high-quality school nearby," Jochim said. "So when you think about the trade-offs families make, lower-income families have harder trade-offs."

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Read and listen to the full piece.

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