Leadership Insider, Oct. 2008: Additional Resources
“A question of representation: Diversity and 21st Century School Boards”
Links to any documents identified in each part of the October 2008 issue of Leadership Insider and other resources related to that part are provided under each part’s heading. Additional information on these issues and on other organizations that address them also is collected below.
Past issues of Leadership Insider and the accompanying online resources for those issues are here.
1. The change and the challenge
NSBA, School Boards at the Dawn of the 21st Century
2002 report prepared for NSBA by Frederick M. Hess of the University of Virginia based on a survey of school board members from nearly one-seventh of the nation’s school districts. Includes a profile of boards and board members, as well as a section on board elections.
U.S. Census Bureau, 2008 National Population Projections
August 2008 press release with links to detailed projections on the diversity of the U.S. population.
Pew Research Center, U.S. Population Projections: 2005-2050
February, 2008 report by Jeffrey S. Passel and D’Vera Cohn.
National Center for Education Statistics, The Condition of Education 2008
Latest annual report by Michael Planty, William Hussar, Stephen Provasnik et al., which provides data on 43 indicators on the condition of education, in five main areas: (1) participation in education; (2) learner outcomes; (3) student effort and educational progress; (4) the contexts of elementary and secondary education; and (5) the contexts of postsecondary education.
Center on Education Policy, Has Student Achievement Increased Since 2002? State Test Score Trends Through 2006–07
June 2008 report by Nancy Kober, Naomi Chudowsky, and Victor Chudowsky examining whether student achievement has increased and achievement gaps narrowed since the 2002 enactment of the No Child Left Behind Act. Includes profiles and data on individual states.
NSBA Center for Public Education on 2007 NAEP results
September 2007 summarizing key points in National Center for Education Statistics report on the 2007 NAEP results, The Nation’s Report Card: Mathematics and Reading 2007, with links to the full report.
National Center for Education Statistics, Status and Trends in Education of Racial and Ethnic Minorities
September 2007 report by Angelina KewalRamani, Lauren Gilbertson, Mary Ann Fox, and Stephen Provasnik presenting 28 indicators of educational achievement of Hispanic, Black, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian, and Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander students compared with each other and with White students, including specific educational differences among Hispanic ancestry subgroups (such as Mexican, Puerto Rican, or Cuban) and Asian ancestry subgroups (such as Asian Indian, Chinese, or Filipino).
NSBA Center for Public Education, “At a Glance: The Proficiency Debate”
June 2008 by Jim Hull explaining NAEP results, what they do and don’t tell us, and the discrepancy between rates of proficiency on NAEP compared to on state assessments.
NSBA Center for Public Education on Changing Demographics
November 2007 summary by Ron Crouch and Sally Banks Zakariya of key points to keep in mind when exploring demographic data and “The United States of education: a guide to our changing demographics and their implications for public schools,” which is intended “to help public school leaders and policy makers explore shifting demographics and what to do about them.” The guide concludes with a discussion of public policy implications and a list of questions for school leaders.
National Education Association, A Report on the Status of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in Education: Beyond the “Model Minority” Stereotype
2005 report by Stacey J. Lee and Kevin K. Kumashiro warning that stereotypes about the academic success of Asian American students can obscure serious achievement gaps among within the Asian American community and the challenges facing immigrants and those in poverty.
2. Are school boards representative?
Gender and Multi-Cultural Leadership Project, 2005 National Database of Non-white Elected Officials
Data on the numbers of minority elected officials at federal, state, and local levels of government compiled Pei-te Lien, Carol Hardy-Fanta, Christine Marie Sierra, and Dianne M. Pinderhughes. Data are broken down by ethnicity, office held, and state.
Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, Black Elected Officials: A Statistical Summary
Periodic reports of data on black elected officials, including information on offices held, regional and state distribution, and trends. The U.S. Census cites the Center’s recent data in this chart.
William G. Howell, ed., Besieged: School Boards and the Future of Education Politics
2005 collection of writings on school boards published by the Brookings Institution, including the chapter by Melissa J. Marschall on “Minority Incorporation and Local School Boards” and the chapter by Kenneth J. Meier and Eric Gonzalez Juenke on “Electoral Structure and the Quality of Representation on School Boards.” The link is to the Google Book Search page on the book, which allows to viewer to preview the text and provides purchasing information.
NALEO Education Fund, “A Profile of Latino Elected Officials in the United States and Their Progress Since 1996”
2007 report by education fund of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials reviewing data on election of Hispanics by office and by state and analyzing trends.
Latino Issues Forum, Beyond the Classroom: An Analysis of California’s Public School Governance
August 2006 report by John Arrona and Raquel Donosoon on representation of Hispanics on California school boards. In addition to criticizing the statistical underrepresentation of Hispanics on school boards statewide, the report also highlights specific school districts with high Hispanic enrollments that lack Hispanic school board members.
U.S. Census Bureau, 1992 Census of Governments, Local Elected Officials, by Sex, Race, Hispanic Origin, and Type of Government: 1992
Includes 1992 data not only on white, black, and Hispanic officials but also on Asian, Pacific Islander, American Indian, Eskimo, and Aleut officials.
3. Does board diversity matter?
Kenneth J. Meier and Joseph Stewart Jr., The Politics of Hispanic Education: Un. Paso Pa'Lante y Dos Pa'tras
1991 work cited in Latino Issues Forum report. The link is to the Google Book Search page on the book, which allows to viewer to preview the text and provides purchasing information.
David L. Leal and Frederick M. Hess, “The politics of bilingual education expenditures in urban school districts”
Excerpt and library availability of study, published in Social Science Quarterly in December 2000 and cited in Latino Issues Forum report, that found that Hispanic representation on school boards is associated with increased money for bilingual education.
William Ellis and Alisa Hicklin, "Racial Inequalities in Public School Spending: The Unification of Representation and Structure"
Abstract only of paper presented in January, 2008 at the annual meeting of the Southern Political Science Association.
Frederick M. Hess and David L. Leal, "Minority Teachers, Minority Students, and College Matriculation: A New Look at the Role-Modeling Hypothesis"
Excerpt of this 1997 Policy Studies Journal article in the cited in Latino Issues Forum report.
4. The impact of the board’s election structure
Theodore S. Arrington and Thomas Gill Watts, "Election of Blacks to School Boards in North Carolina"
Excerpt only and purchase information for 1991 article in Political Research Quarterly on 1987 study of 132 North Carolina school boards that found appointed board least representative for African-Americans and ward-elected boards more representative than those elected at-large. An abstract of the article is here. Note: The hard copy of Leadership Insider confused the date of year of the study with the year of the article’s publication.
Warren Eller, Alisa Hicklin, and Rene Rocha, “Political Representation and Ethnic Equality: Assessing the Determinants and Impacts of African-American Representation in Education”
NSBA was unable to locate additional online information on this paper presented in August, 2003 at the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association on a study of 1,692 school districts in which African-Americans constituted less than 50 percent of the population. The study concluded that at-large school board elections led to greater representation by African-Americans. See also the 2008 paper by Meier, Walker and Walker, below under “Other resources.”
Cheryl Lanette Wright, “A critical analysis of the influence of electoral structure on the responsiveness of urban school boards with African American representation”
Citation information only for the 1993 dissertation at the University of Texas at Austin.
Barbara Klaymeier Wills, "The effect of the school board electoral system on demographic representation, election and service, community participation, school board member roles, and choice and achievement"
Citation information only for the 2003 dissertation at Florida State University. Note: The hard copy of Leadership Insider misidentified Dr. Wills as “Mills.”
Kenneth Meier, Meredith Walker, and Sade Walker, “Structure, Party, Representation and Race: The Puzzles of Black Education Policy”
April, 2008 paper presented at the Midwest Political Science Association examining the 1800 largest school districts in the U.S. and concluding that the fact that African-Americans sometimes fare better under at-large elections may be explained by the influence of region (North vs. South) and of partisan coalition-building. The paper goes on to find that in “Democratic competitive” states, board members elected at-large were able to generate more African-American administrators than those elected in wards, but that in “Republican dominated” states, board members elected in ward systems were more effective at this measure. As measured by percentage of black teachers or bureaucrats, ward elections in both Democratic and Republican dominant states led to more success.
David L. Leal, Valerie Martinez-Ebers and Kenneth J. Meier, “The Politics of Latino
Education: The Biases of At-Large Elections. The Journal of Politics”
November 2004 article in the Journal of Politics that examined determinants and consequences of Hispanic political representation in K-12 education and found that at-large school board elections negatively influence Latino educational representation, which produces a ripple effect that ultimately reduces the share of Latino teachers.
5. The case for at-large elections
James Madison, The Federalist 10
Discussion of the ways in which governmental structure can address the problem of “faction.” The complete Federalist papers are available online at this website.
James Scott McClain, "The Voting Rights Act and Local School Boards: An Argument for Deference to Educational Policy in Remedies for Vote Dilution"
Abstract only of 1988 student note in the Texas Law Review addressing special concerns of local school boards, describing the historical and theoretical basis for depoliticized educational policy in local school board reapportionments, and arguing for judicial deference to educational policy in remedies for vote dilution.
6. The Voting Rights Act and the courts
NSBA Legal Clips on Bartlett v. Strickland and Bethlehem, Pennsylvania settlement
Item from NSBA’s weekly school law e-newsletter excerpting an Allentown Morning Call article on the settlement of a Voting Rights Act claim against at-large elections for the Bethlehem Area School Board and providing information on the upcoming U.S. Supreme Court case and past VRA litigation targeting school boards.
SCOTUSwiki on Bartlett v. Strickland
Summaries, analysis, and court filings in the Supreme Court case.
Aliana Ramos, Myrtle Beach Sun News, “Many seek board posts in Georgetown”
August 20, 2008 news article on new hybrid election structure in Georgetown County, South Carolina, adopted in response to threatened Voting Rights Act lawsuit by U.S. Department of Justice.
Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area on lawsuit against Madera Unified School District
Statement and press conference posted on the website of the San Francisco Bay Area Independent Media Center about the California Voting Rights Act challenge to at-large school board elections.
Madera Unified School District announcement on appointment of Hispanic board member
September 10, 2008, announcement of the appointment of Michael Salvador to fill a vacancy on the school board.
U.S. Department of Justice, Voting Section home page section on Voting Rights Act
Online summaries of the act’s major provisions, including its prohibiting on practices with the intent or effect of discriminating against minority votes and its requirement that some jurisdiction obtain advance approval from the U.S. Attorney General or a court for any changes to its system of elections.
Pei-te Lien, Dianne M. Pinderhughes, Carol Hardy-Fanta, and Christine Sierra, “The Voting Rights Act and the Election of Nonwhite Officials”
July 2007 article in PS: Political Science & Politics, a journal of the American Political Science Association, on the results of study finding that non-whites are underrepresented in elected offices and that the Voting Rights Act exerts a powerful influence on electoral results for minorities.
Rene R. Rocha, “Black-Brown Coalitions in Local School Board Elections”
Abstract only and purchase information for 2007 article in Political Research Quarterly indicating that an examination of 1,500 school board election results revealed little evidence for the formation of Anglo-Latino voting coalitions, but did find indications that Anglo-black coalitions form when an area becomes populated by Latino noncitizens, possibly due to increased social distance this causes between Latinos and other communities.
Peter Schmidt, Education Week, “Dade to Abandon At-Large Election of School Board”
May 14, 1994 news article on settlement of Voting Rights Act lawsuit against Dade County, Florida, with the replacement of at-large voting with a ward-based system.
7. The future for school boards
Institute for Self-Reliance, New Rules Project on cumulative voting in Amarillo, Texas
Explanation of election system adopted in response to Voting Rights Act lawsuit over vote dilution.
City of Cambridge, Massachusetts on proportional voting system
Detailed explanation of the city’s “Plan E” proportional voting system, based on the so-called “Cincinnati Method.”
John T. Spence and Michael Margolis, “Rationalizations and repercussions: evaluating a hybrid at-large and ward electoral system”
Excerpt and library availability of September 2007 article in the National Civic League’s National Civic Review on the adoption of a hybrid election system in Covington, Kentucky.
League of Women Voters of Minnesota, “Alternative Voting Systems: Facts and Issues” September 2004 study reviewing a variety of other alternative voting systems. While the focus is on single-seat state and local elections, the study provides detailed information on a range of election ideas.
Mark Walsh, Education Week, “Fine Lines: School Boards Clash Over New District Maps”
Nov. 7, 2001 article on redrawing of school board election boundaries and systems in Dallas, Texas and elsewhere.
NSBA Center for Public Education on school board elections and effectiveness
Collection of resources on good governance, as well as a brochure for voters, “All in Favor: Cast Your Vote for Student Success” on the importance of school board elections and the key questions for evaluating candidates, including questions relating to diversity.
American School Board Journal, September 2008
The focus of this issue is “Immigration and Diversity.” Features include articles about school districts navigating the politics of immigration; school struggles and success stories in rising to the challenges and opportunities of diversity; and a profile of the Salt Lake City school district’s lone nonwhite board member, Alama Uluave, who was born in Tonga.
NSBA National Black Caucus of School Board Members
The NBC home page includes organizational information on the caucus, caucus newsletters, and resources for school board members interested in improving education for African American students.
NSBA National Caucus of American Indian/Alaska Native School Board Members
Among other things, NCAIAN strives to promote quality education for all students, with emphasis on the problems and successes of the American Indian/Alaska Native student, and to improve collaboration among American Indian/Alaska Native school board members, their communities, political leaders, state school board associations, tribal education committees, and NSBA.
NSBA National Hispanic Caucus of School Board Members
The NHC home page includes organizational information on the caucus, caucus newsletters, and resources for school board members interested in improving education for Latino/Hispanic students.
Asian Pacific Islander School Board Members Association
APISBMA is a “network of school board members within California and affiliates nationwide … formed to encourage and support thoughtful, systematic and coordinated research, evaluation and development of appropriate policies and practices to serve the needs of Asian Pacific Islanders (API) students and their families.”
California Latino School Boards Association
CLSBA is “committed to meeting the educational needs for all Latino students by working with educational organizations and empowering current and future Latino School board members.”
Mexican-American School Board Association of Texas
MASBA is an association of Texas school districts, their school board members, administrators, and education service centers with the mission of advocating quality public education for all Texas students.
Texas Caucus of Black School Board Members
TCBSBM provides a forum for the unique issues faced by black school board members and students in Texas and facilitates communications among these school board members, their communities, the Texas Association of School Boards, NSBA, and other organizations.National Indian School Board Association
The Montana-based NISBA supports quality education “in accordance with the Tribe's needs for cultural and economic well-being in keeping with the wide diversity of Indian tribes and communities as distinct cultural and governmental entities,” with a focus on Bureau of Education schools.