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I support school choice because…

January 30, 2013 posted by Adam Childers

I support school choice week because...

"... every child deserves a quality education."

"... I don't want my child's education dictated by zip code."

"... parents should have a say in where their child goes to school."

We have received countless emails from our members throughout this week, sharing their stories of why they support school choice. As many of you are aware, the celebration of National School Choice Week (NSCW) is well under way. Individuals all over the country have come together to celebrate the various forms of choice, including traditional public, magnet, charter, and private, to name a few. From school choice rallies to community events to sending letters to elected officials, StudentsFirst members around the country have made a bold statement in support of school choice. Below are a few examples of some of these events.

School Choice Week - Los AngelesLast Friday in Los Angeles, StudentsFirst joined Alliance College-Ready Public Schools, Parent Revolution, California Charter Schools Association, the California branch of Democrats for Education Reform, Green Dot Public Schools, Education Reform Now, and Reason to launch National School Choice Week's Whistle Stop Tour. Over 700 parents, teachers, students, and community activists turned out to show their support.

School Choice Week - Kansas CityOn Tuesday in Kansas City, StudentsFirst joined Children's Education Alliance of Missouri, Parent Revolution, Missouri Charter Schools Association, the Show-Me Institute, and FreedomWorks for a school choice rally at Union Station. Hundreds came out to show their support.

One powerful anecdote from the event was from a teacher, who stated that he has taught at public, charter, and private schools, but that the most important aspect above all else was not the type of school, but that all students were held to the highest expectations. This goes to show that conversations around school choice should not center on the type of school per se, but the quality of the education within that school.

However, through all of the celebration, we cannot lose sight of the important work to be done before all parents are empowered with quality choice. As Monday's and yesterday's blog posts indicate, we must look to pass policies that advance not just choice, but quality choice. States as a whole can do more to promote charter schools, open enrollment, vouchers for low-income families, and greater accountability for choice programs that currently exist. This is why choice is integral to transforming the U.S. education system.

We encourage you to continue celebrating this week by:

  • Attending a National School Choice Week event. You can find one here: SchoolChoiceWeek.com.
  • Sharing pictures and stories of your NSCW event. Please send them to admin@studentsfirst.org.
  • Engaging in the active social media discussions on Facebook and Twitter, using the hashtag #SCW
  • Signing up to get more involved with StudentsFirst. and read our thoughts on school choice from our recently released "School Choice Brief".

Adam Childers serves as the Knowledge Coordinator on the Membership team. Adam's passion for education reform stems from his experience as a teacher at the Adult Literacy Council where he worked with high school dropouts to attain their GED. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Topics: School Choice