North Carolina has become the 10th state in the union to provide universal school choice to all its young citizens.
Last Friday, the North Carolina General Assembly approved a state budget deal that included a massive expansion of the state’s school-choice program. The budget triples funding for the state’s Opportunity Scholarship program and ends income restrictions for obtaining a private school voucher, The News & Observer reports.
Beginning next year, every family in the state will be able to apply for a school voucher to pay for the cost of attending a K-12 private school.
For the 2023-2024 school year, the state provided awards of up to $6,492 per eligible student.
After the budget’s approval, in a statement to the Daily Citizen, NC Family Policy Council President John L. Rustin said, “The NC Family Policy Council is grateful to our state lawmakers for further increasing school choice options to the children and families of North Carolina.” He added,
The eligibility and funding expansions to the state’s Opportunity Scholarship Program recently approved in the state budget will enable tens of thousands more families to select the environment that best meets the educational needs of their children.
This will help to ensure that all children in North Carolina have the opportunity to receive the education they so richly deserve.
School choice is vitally important in empowering parents to choose what school and education model is best for their children. Our nation is in dire need of better education; this is especially true in some of our nation’s largest cities.
According to a recent report, 13 Baltimore City high schools do not have a single student who has achieved grade-level proficiency in math. And in the district’s five top performing schools, just 11.4% were proficient in math.
In Minnesota, the state’s department of education found that during the 2022-2023 school year, Minnesota “had 75 schools that had a 0% proficiency rate in math.”
It’s heartbreaking to think about all of today’s students who will never live up to their potential to become tomorrow’s doctors, engineers, innovators, teachers and lawyers as a result of our failing education system.
As the Heritage Foundation explains, school choice provides many benefits:
- School choice is good for student safety;
- School choice increases parental satisfaction and involvement;
- School choice provides options for low-income families;
- School choice leads to higher graduation rates.
Children are better off when parents control their education and upbringing – and school choice helps them do exactly that.
To help parents navigate their child’s public school, Focus on the Family has created a free resource, Back to School for Parents: A busy parent’s guide to what’s happening in your children’s classrooms and practical steps you can take to protect them.
The resource can help you stay informed with happenings in your child’s school. It also makes suggestions on how to respectfully advocate on behalf of your child and gives guidance on how to discuss difficult topics with them.
You can download a free copy of this resource by clicking here.
Related articles and resources:
Back to School for Parents: A busy parent’s guide to what’s happening in your children’s classrooms and practical steps you can take to protect them.
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