Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Urban & Regional Planning


Urban and Regional Planning

First Advisor

Elsie Harper-Anderson


The focus of this thesis is to seek and observe the patterns of economic development around local public schools of varying quality. The Greater Richmond Region (consisting of the City of Richmond and the counties of Chesterfield, Hanover and Henrico) were used as the basis of the study. The scores for the schools were derived from an equation that took into account some of the main quality aspects. The factors that went into the equation were graduation rates, dropout rates, standardized test scores and AP (Advance Placement) enrollment. The basis of the economic development evaluation is based on a set of indicators published by the King County (Washington) Department of Planning. These indicators include real wages per worker, poverty rate and high school graduation rate. Using GIS, these two data sets were observed for patterns and trends. The findings of this study show that not only do the economic development indicators change based on quality but also on geographic location. This study ends with recommendations for cities to improve both their education systems as well as their economic development opportunities.


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Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

August 2013