My friend attorney Deborah Bucknam of Walden has long been a strong advocate for parental choice in education. Last week she attended a meeting of the Mendon and Chittenden school district. She reports that “ 99% of those attending wanted school choice. That included admitted leftists, public school teachers, retired public school teachers, and some school administrators. At least half said they moved to Mendon and Chittenden because they had school choice.”
“They understood the issues: that school choice is more equitable; that each child is different and has different educational needs– that without school choice, those needs will not be met. [They understood] that independent schools are inclusive and don’t discriminate. Many had their own stories about their kids that needed special help and independent schools met those needs. Many said school choice raises property values. One person said that because the courts have ruled that you cannot discriminate against religious schools, that the school board association has now changed the wording to “equitable”. Virtually all (except, I believe one school board member or school administrator) agreed that paying tuition does not adversely impact the budget.”
Deb concluded that “I was heartened by the intelligent discussion and the insight of the speakers, who were almost all parents living locally. School Choice is a winner, at least in Chittenden/Mendon!”
That’s a heartening report to all of us who have long urged parental choice in education.