Author(s): Paul DiPerna
The "Montana K-12 and School Choice Survey" project, commissioned by the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice and conducted by Braun Research, Inc. (BRI), measures Montana registered voters’ familiarity and views on a range of K-12 education topics and school choice reforms. We report response levels and differences (often using the modifying term “net”) of voter opinion, and the intensity of responses.
Where do Montanans stand on important issues and policy proposals in K-12 education? We try to provide some observations and insights in this paper. We report our key findings in the following section.
A randomly selected and statistically representative sample of Montana voters recently responded to 19 substantive questions and 11 demographic questions. A total of 604 telephone interviews were conducted in English from April 12 to 19, 2012, by means of both landline and cell phone. Statistical results were weighted to correct known demographic discrepancies. The margin of sampling error for the statewide sample is ± 4.0 percentage points.
In this project we included four split-sample experiments. A split-sample design is a systematic way of comparing the effects of two or more alternative wordings for a given question. The purpose is to see if particular wording, or providing a new piece of information, can significantly influence opinion on a given topic. For this survey, we were particularly interested in how wording can affect responses to questions on education spending, taxes, and digital learning—all salient issues in Montana state politics and policy discussions.