Education Publications

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The purpose of this paper is two-fold. First, it presents a model examining the school choice processes of disadvantaged households accessing the LFP sector in a study on Lucknow District, Uttar Pradesh. The model presents households in the study as engaging in ‘active choice’. Active choice is seen as the deliberated action of households in making concerted choices about their children’s schooling through a complex process. The process involved assessing competing school sectors (mainly the state and LFP), and analyzing particular household circumstances and local school markets through a systemic set of values, beliefs, and “mental models” (North, 1990) about education. Second, it focuses on the adept employment of engagement strategies specific to the LFP sector by households in the study to interact with their chosen schools. Since the schooling arena is heavily marketised, household behavior was expected to follow Hirschman’s (1970) classic “exit, voice, and loyalty” framework. However, contextual specificities of the LFP sector necessitated a re-examination of this framework when applied here.


Article originally published at National Center for the Study of Privatization in Education, Columbia University

Citation of this paper:

Srivastava, P. (2007). Neither voice nor loyalty: school Choice and the low-fee private Sector in India. Research Publications Series, Occasional Paper No. 134. National Center for the Study of Privatization in Education, Columbia University, New York.