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Can Magnet School Performance and Student Body Family Income Be Predicted for Neighborhood Revitalization Purposes?

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Kelly B. Bennett (Creator)
Institution
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Advisor
Selima Sultana

Abstract: Poor-performing schools are consistently seen as a barrier to attracting middle and upper income families to center city neighborhoods. Although some strategies have used magnet schools to attract families to these locations, few have considered the effects of school performance on their project. School performance is highly tied to socioeconomic status, making it difficult to create a high-performing school in a low-income neighborhood. However, there is little research on magnet school performance and how it relates to student socioeconomic status. This thesis establishes what ties magnet schools have to neighborhood socioeconomic status and creates a model to predict magnet school performance and student body average family income. Geo-coded student address data from the Guilford County, NC school system is combined with income and racial data and school characteristic variables to create a profile of each magnet school in the district. The results of this study are good news for neighborhood revitalization projects. This research proves that magnet school performance is independent of neighborhood socioeconomic status and that many of these schools perform well because they serve students from middle and upper income households. As these schools are often competitive and accept a limited number of students, a high performing magnet school with an attendance zone that gives seating priority to children in a targeted neighborhood may attract middle and upper income families to purchase homes there, raising property values, increasing the tax base and slowing the affects of sprawl.

Additional Information

Publication
Thesis
Language: English
Date: 2008
Keywords
Magnet schools, Neighborhood revitalization, School performance
Subjects
Magnet schools $x Evaluation.
Academic achievement.
School choice
Community development, Urban.
Urban renewal.
Public schools $z North Carolina $z Guilford County.
Magnet schools $z North Carolina $z Guilford County.