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Fear drives school choices, Caro says

By: James Wells 

Fear drives parents’ school choices – Jane Caro, novelist and public school advocate, has argued.

School choice is a purchasing decision like any other, Caro said. This is driven by two emotions – hope and fear – which compete to influence decision-making. She said fear usually comes out on top in the end.

“Everybody makes purchase decisions and choice of a school is a purchase decision for emotional reasons,” Caro said. “We like to tell ourselves we make them for rational reasons but it’s a truth universally known by the advertising industry that’s just one of the ways human beings fool themselves. Everything is driven by an emotional imperative.

“There is still a lot of hope involved in the primary school choices, particularly for 5-year-olds, because with 5-year-olds, we’ve still got an awful lot of hopes around. By the time our kids are nearly 10, a lot of those hopes have been dashed, we’ve got a lot more fear around them.”

Caro will be speaking more in-depth about these issues at an upcoming conference. She sat down with Education Review to discuss.


This article and podcast was originally published in Education Review.