News & Events

New Publication: Parental Educational Decision Making

A new article to be published in Teachers College Record explores the types of information parents seek as they make decisions about their child’s education and the types of data displays that help make information accessible and understandable.

The authors (Dr. Ellen Mandinach, Dr. Ryan Miskell, and Dr. Edith Gummer) conducted focus groups with parents across the state of Missouri. Focus group participants shared how they make educational decisions and the data they like to have access to when making those decisions.

The research found that parents seek qualitative data sources that supply descriptions of schools and districts. They want not only test scores and school grades but also information that helps them understand the schools. They want details about the teachers, leaders, and programs offered and information about safety and processes. Parents want the information presented in accessible and understandable formats that include informative graphics with easily understood details.