Comprehensive school allocation through school choice: How local civil servants organize for freedom of choice and equal opportunity
About the project
The balance between individual freedom and equal opportunity is vital in education. School choice was introduced in Sweden in the 1990s based on arguments about increasing individual freedom. Previous research shows that the reform has contributed to increased segregation in the school allocation processes. Today, the organisation of school choice and school allocation varies between municipalities.
The project objective is to investigate and analyse how school allocation through school choice is organised in Swedish municipalities, with the aim of understanding how the tension between individual freedom and equal opportunity is handled and addressed by civil servants. The project studies local implementations of school allocation through school choice, thereby informing crucial questions regarding how civil servants can balance conflicting values of individual freedom and the need for common values and public good through education. In extension, the project's results will inform policy about the consequences of rules and guidelines for school choice and school allocation. Such knowledge is essential for local and national public officials and politicians.
We carry out the following three studies:
- mapping all municipalities’ guidelines for comprehensive school allocation through school choice;
- analysing motives and justifications for comprehensive school allocation through school choice;
- analysing the practice of comprehensive school allocation through school choice.