Objective. Previous research indicates that minority and low-SES households
have different preferences for schools than Angle and high-SES households.
Some fear that in a system of school choice, these differences will result
in segregation by race and class. Methods. This research analyzes new data
generated by 1,100 interviews of choosing parents. Results. While there ar
e differences between racial/ethnic and income groups in terms of their pre
ferences regarding their children's schools, the differences do not extend
to the parents' common concern for academic excellence. Where value sets do
differ, they seem to do so because of differences in the "real-world" circ
umstances faced by these two groups rather than due to a failure to value s
chool quality, as previous research sometimes implies. Conclusions. These d
ata do not support the argument that the central educational preferences of
households differ by race and/or class, nor the implication that school ch
oice programs will promote racial and class segregation.