What is School Choice?
November 16, 2023 | Sharon Sedlar
There are many myths (and outright lies) promoted about the school choice movement. Rather than speak to them specifically and re-broadcast them, let me tell you what school choice IS:
- The idea that parents are their child’s best advocate – that we know our children and what they need.
- An understanding that one uniform, top-down option will never satisfy every unique child.
- The pursuit of policies that support parent agency, student need, and education model availability in the system space.
In what should be a “bottom-up” system, the decision on where to send a child starts with parents. Education models are responsive to the families’ expressed needs for innovation, flexibility, and standards; homeschooling, district education, vocational-centered education and apprenticeships, schools that focus on classical education structure (or not), arts programs, outdoor programs, schools that utilize a hybrid model and anything else as a pathway is supported.
Legislation facilitates the ability of those families and educators to work together cooperatively in the best interest of that child. The financial aspect could take the form of entrepreneurial grants, tax credits, education scholarship accounts, public education funds – it truly is only limited by what the policymakers are willing to entertain.
When discussing school choice, or education choice, and forming your opinion about a movement, organization, or idea, I encourage you to always ask yourself: Does this benefit the adults, or the children?
As for us, PaFEC will always pick the side of the children.