Centralized choice

School districts around the world use centralized school choice
  • How it works:
    • Students submit a ranked list of schools to the district
    • The district uses some computer algorithm called a school choice mechanism to assign students to schools
    • The mechanism makes assignments using “priority groups” and random lottery numbers
    • Priority groups  depend on things like the neighborhood you live in or whether you have a sibling at the school.
  • Details matter for students and families!
    • Some districts use mechanisms where the goal is to make it so your best strategy is just to write down the schools you like in order.
      • Boston, New York, Denver…
    • Other districts use mechanisms where what your best strategy depends on how hard it is to get in to different schools.
      • Charlotte NC, Barcelona, Beijing…
    • Which is better for a district depends on what schools households like (preferences) and how much households know about school choice (beliefs)
    • This project is about measuring and understanding preferences and beliefs