Title page for ETD etd-04272011-221350

Type of Document Dissertation
Author Melise, Patricia J.
Author's Email Address pmelise@vt.edu
URN etd-04272011-221350
Title Variables that Attract and Retain Middle-Income Families to Urban Public Schools
Degree Doctor of Education
Department Educational Leadership and Policy Studies
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Twiford, Travis W. Committee Chair
Cash, Carol S. Committee Member
Tonelson, Steve Committee Member
Tripp, Norman Wayne Committee Member
  • education
  • middle-income families
  • middle-class
  • school choice
  • public schools
  • Private schools
  • urban
  • White flight
Date of Defense 2011-04-25
Availability unrestricted
In the mid-nineteenth century, with the influx of European immigrants into the cities, public schools became the answer to the poverty and ignorance of the urban masses. Then, in the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century, urban public schools were again called on to educate the many African-Americans who migrated to the cities from poor Southern states. Again, the idea of mass education of the public, funded by the public, became the panacea for all the problems of city living. The civil rights movement brought a flood of litigation, and courts attempted to provide equal educational opportunities to all students, even those in poor urban localities. Currently, urban public schools face the flight of middle-income families from the cities to the suburbs, within-district flight of more affluent families to private and parochial schools, and diminishing funds with which they must serve their populations. This study explored the factors that would influence middle-income families to return or remain in urban public schools to restore the original concept of a public education for all by all (Hunter & Donahoo, 2003)
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