Saturday, August 6, 2011

Legislators discuss school choice

Yesterday our friends at Americans for Prosperity hosted a one-hour discussion on education, and Michael McNutt reports today in The Oklahoman that "the panel of four legislators spent most of the time talking about school choice."
Sen. Clark Jolley, R-Edmond, said he expected legislators next year to consider measures that would move another step forward toward universal school choice, which would allow every parent to choose the best school for their child.

"If you're wealthy enough to move into (a better school) system, then you've got that great education coming your way," he said. "If you're not able to afford it, then we're going to leave you stuck in whatever system you live within boundaries of ... The economic freedom is just not there."

Legislators this year passed the first voucher program in the state which is intended to make it easier for students who attend or live in the attendance boundaries of the state's poorest performing schools to attend private schools. Senate Bill 969 would authorize tax credits for corporations and individuals who donate money to provide private school scholarships for qualifying children.

"School choice works," Jolley said. "It improves the quality of the product of public education. [He is correct.]

"School choice is giving parents the flexibility to take the money that they're spending in tax dollars and use it as they think their children would best be benefited," Jolley said. ...

Rep. Jason Nelson, R-Oklahoma City, said Oklahomans like to make choices, and public schools shouldn't be different.

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