Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Leadership Studies


Leadership Studies

Committee Chair

Jones, Roger E.

Committee Member

Lang, Daniel G.

Committee Member

Selden, Sally C.


This dissertation focused on the State of Louisiana and the Commonwealth of Virginia, which provides a limited perspective on what directly and indirectly influences school choice programs. Louisiana is a state and has a legal system predicated on French or Napoleonic Law, and Virginia is a Commonwealth and has a legal system predicated on English or Common Law. In order to remedy or minimize constitutional conflicts related to an education system, U.S. political parties have relied on the judicial system and the developing of case law to provide direction that in turn provides fodder for future legislation and education policy. The purpose of this study is to review the Constitution of the United States, amendments and case law; review Louisiana and Virginia constitutions, the legislature, judiciary and education structures, political culture and case law to determine if there is a relationship between the constitutions, amendments, structures, political culture and case law that influence and/or shape K-12 school choice programs enacted in Louisiana and Virginia. Interviews with elected and appointed public officials were conducted.


Note: Author listed on work as Karen M.S. Hiltz