Date of Award

Spring 2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Foundations & Leadership

Committee Director

Jay Scribner

Committee Member

Karen Sanzo

Committee Member

Petros Katsioloudis


Policy actors unite political culture, power, and values to make substantial decisions which are often subjective in nature. Politics and policy are about collective decisions, which rely on the arrangement of a group of people. As values can influence policy actors in their attempt to solve problems, it is important for policymakers to establish a balance among the most essential values. A qualitative case study approach was used to investigate how, and what ways, political culture influenced how state stakeholders interpreted or implemented policy. Power and values were explored as both can connect for the implementation of policy. If values, which are widely subjective, play a part in establishing policy, then it effects all stakeholders. The purpose of this case study was to define how values and political culture impacts the implementation of school choice policy. The theories of power and values are situated within a political culture framework, and used to critically examine whether or not values influenced legislators as they implemented policy. Multiple interviews were conducted, and transcriptions of those conversations revealed that the powers of perception, discourse, and persuasion influenced how stakeholders and policy actors view and interpret school choice. In addition, the data also revealed how stakeholders perceive the values of choice, equity and efficiency differently along with the impact of these values on society.