Date Thesis Awarded


Access Type

Honors Thesis -- Access Restricted On-Campus Only

Degree Name

Bachelors of Arts (BA)


Public Policy


Paul Manna

Committee Members

Ronald Rapoport

Salvatore Saporito


Are Latino students more likely to achieve at high levels when they are represented in school districts by members of their own race? And, how does that representation affect the academic performance of non-Latino students? This paper examines these questions through the lens of representative bureaucracy, as used in Meier & O'Toole's (2006) study of Latino student achievement. I define representation as the presence of Latino school board members and Latino teachers in a school district. My analysis is a quantitative study of the 110 largest school districts in the United States, which extends Meier & O'Toole's (2006) work in Texas by examining the relationship between Latino representation and Latino student achievement. I extend their work in two ways: I expand the scope beyond Texas, by focusing on the 110 largest districts in the nation; and, I also consider the potential relationship between Latino representation and the achievement of non-Latino students. Overall, the findings show that certain measures of student achievement are strongly related to the presence of Latino representation. As the number of Latinos in US schools increases, it is critical to understand the factors affecting their academic performance.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.


Thesis is part of Honors ETD pilot project, 2008-2013. Migrated from Dspace in 2016.

On-Campus Access Only