Date of Award

Spring 5-10-2014

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Political Science

First Advisor

Dr. Toby Bolsen

Second Advisor

Dr. Jeffrey Lazarus

Third Advisor

Dr. Steve Anthony


Charter schools have recently become a hot topic of debate in the United States. For parents who cannot afford private schooling or moving to another school district, charter schools seem to be an attractive option. These schools, which are often argued to outperform traditional schools, offer an alternative path to public education which allows teachers more flexibility to employ innovative strategies in the classroom. In order to expedite the creation of such schools, Republicans in the Georgia General Assembly called for the amending of the Georgia Constitution which would allow the state to approve charters by circumventing the publicly elected local school board. This study analyzes the more recent political history of the Commission, the debate surrounding the amendment, and ultimately the vote itself for Amendment 1.